Research conducted this month by Bounce Insights on behalf of Checkout reveals that 72% of Irish consumers claim to routinely consume protein products, both natural and packaged.
The survey, which was conducted via the Bounce Insights Consumer Insight Platform, targeted a nationally representative audience of over 500 people located in Ireland and asked them various questions about their consumption and use of protein products.
When asked what, if any, protein products, either natural or packaged (ready meals or bars) they routinely purchased in convenience stores or supermarkets, 26% of consumers said they routinely purchase protein bars, 55% of which claim to purchase Fulfil protein bars on a regular basis.
The other 45% of respondents claim to purchase a variety of brands, including Boost, Nutri Grain, Grenade, and MyProtein.
12% of consumers claim to routinely purchase protein powder, with 92% of these respondents claiming to purchase generic protein powders and only 8% of respondents mentioning a brand name.
From this 8%, MyProtein and Optimum Nutrition were the most-commonly-referred-to brands.
Meanwhile, 10% of consumers claim to routinely purchase protein yogurt.
Respondents in this category indicate that brands such as Glenisk, Skyr and Aldi rank highest in purchase intention.
Natural Protein Sources
When it comes to natural sources of protein, 12% of consumers claim to routinely purchase nuts and meat as part of their protein intake, in particular peanuts and Brazil nuts.
Whereas fish, chicken and steaks ranked most among the preferred meats, 12% of consumers claim to routinely purchase milk and eggs as part of their protein intake.
From these responses, Avonmore ranked highest in brand recall for dairy consumption, with Aldi and Lidl branded milks coming in second.
Interestingly, when consumers were asked which natural proteins they would include in their diet if they were preparing to engage in sporting activities, 34% would choose chicken and 24% would choose eggs.
10% of consumers would choose milk and dairy products as their source of natural protein when preparing to engage in sports activities, but only 1% would choose steak.
5% said they would choose turkey, 8% would opt for nuts, and 4% would choose beans. 10% of consumers would not choose a natural protein source when preparing to engage in sports activities.
Over half of Irish consumers have not changed their consumption of protein products because of the pandemic.
Protein Shakes, Powders, And Bars
While 20% of consumers claim that their purchasing and consumption of protein shakes, powders, and bars was affected ‘somewhat’ by the pandemic, 58% of consumers said that their purchasing and consumption habits hadn’t been affected at all.
12% of consumers claimed that they have stopped buying protein shakes, powders, and bars and have not resumed purchasing these products.
10% of consumers claimed that they had stopped buying these products but started buying them again when the gyms reopened.
To increase the level of protein in their diet, 59% of consumers surveyed said they would opt for natural proteins such as beer, chicken, or fish.
11% would opt for high protein ready meals and 25% would opt for a combination of both.
Only 5% of consumers said they would opt for something else to increase the protein levels in their diet.
When asked why they consume protein products, Irish consumers ranked building muscle, recovering after exercise, and repairing muscle as their three main reasons for consumption.