Finnish dairy company Valio has taken part in a research project headed by the VTT Technical Research Centre, to create a prototype for a personalised food dispensary product.
The aim of the project is to asses the viability of creating personalised food products.
There has been a rising demand for healthy, grab-and-go snacks, as a growing number of consumers are prioritising personal well-being and a healthy diet.
A consumer test, carried out in conjunction with the study, found that there was a demand for a 'customisable' snack product.
The project resulted in the creation of a prototype of a snack vending machine that dispenses fibre- and protein-rich snacks based on the preferences of the consumer.
"The prototype offers a 'spoonable' or drinkable alternative, and the choice of a milk- or oat-based product to which the consumer can add protein and fibre, if desired. There will be more alternatives in the future," according to Kaisa Vehmas, VTT senior scientist and project manager.
"Today, people are increasingly more aware of their own personal needs and healthy lifestyles. Food also reflects different values and individual preferences. That’s why there is a growing demand for personalised, preference-based snacks that are easy and quick to prepare," Vehmas added.
Elina Kytö, Valio’s senior research scientist working in consumer research said,"We no longer eat to live; instead, eating is an important part of personal well-being and it’s also a way to express yourself. The ability to customise your food to your own needs and preferences is a trend that is strongly on the upswing.
"This trend will increasingly impact Valio's product development, as consumer awareness of their own well-being and personalised nutrition needs is growing,"
Vehmas added that she believes that in the future, snack vending machines similar to this prototype will be located where people are on the move, such as at airports, train stations, workplaces and markets.
© 2019 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Elizabeth Schroeder. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.