South Beach Diet Effects on Sales

by : Laura Ciocan

Food industry needs to adapt to the South Beach Diet principles in order to remain profitable.

Watching the big amount of “low-carb", diet-friendly versions of foods that appear on the market, one would say that the South Beach Diet has not affected only people who want to get slim and healthy. Companies involved in the food industry have also been feeling the South Beach Diet effects: some of the products in great demand have brought profit while sales for high-carbs, diet unfriendly ones have drastically fallen. The owners of many businesses have taken measures to adapt their range of products to the needs of the market, offering low-carb versions of their products.

  • Some pizza owners have introduced into their menus the low-carb pizza, inventing new dough recipes: Donatos Pizzeria from Columbus, Ohio makes a pizza dough of soy protein and other ingredients and it is said to be very tasty too. Others just offer “pizza in a bucket" - no dough at all, only the topping ingredients (Escondido, California, Pit Stop Pasta).

  • Doughnut producers have been experiencing serious inconvenience – The New York company, Krispy Kreme Doughnuts Inc. has registered a serious decrease in sales that diminished its quarterly profit by more than half and lowered 17 percent of the value of its stock. It plans a change in menu – offering sugar-free, low-fat products.

  • Bakeries are at a pinch. George Weston Ltd. has halted the production of an Entenmann's baked goods factory in Northlake, Illinois in the process of cutting costs. The company produced bagels, pastry and other goods. The flat-bread maker Damascus Bakeries substituted the flour wih grains such as flax, soy and added oat fiber. Healthy sandwich roll-ups with reduced amount of carbs resulted and a high fiber content.

  • Citrus producers introduce low-carb drinks. Florida is the second world oranges producer after Brazil and most of the production is transformed into juice. With the South Beach Diet book advising people against the consumption of orange juice because of its high fructose levels, the State Department of Citrus, Florida’s $9 billion industry, has every reason to be concerned. The consumption had a noticeable drop since these diets reached a critical mass. The state Department of Citrus tries to direct its marketing strategy to convince consumers that orange juice can be compatible with dieting and to emphasize its benefits for health. The introduction of low-carb drinks will cause wholesale prices to rise.

  • Even chips producers find a way out of the “diet situation": Jays Foods LLC has created “Sweet Baby Jays" – chips made from sweet potatoes which are South Beach diet friendly. Strategically, they also raised the prices, as a healthy item is a costly one! And it seems that this strategy works!

  • Kraft Foods Inc. has already created South Beach Diet friendly products and has come to an agreement with Dr. Agatston to use the South Beach Diet trademark to promote them. In 2003, Kraft had already begun its campaign for encouraging healthier lifestyles, offering the consumers low-calorie, reduced carbs products.

    Beer producers try hard to regain the lost ground because of the diet's claim that the beer contains carbohydrates, its consumption leading to “beer bellies". Important beer producers such as Anheuser-Busch Inc. say that this theory is inaccurate and sustain that all beer is “low-carb" being thus suitable for the diet. They have launched ad campaigns urging people to “Have a Beer With Your South Beach Diet".

On the other hand, companies that have as business object poultry, meat and fish trade and those that process dairy products have increased their profit lately:

  • It seems that the US chicken industry has benefited more than the beef or pork industries. In the top of preferences, poultry comes first, followed by beef and pork. The sales of beef also boasted significantly and the variety of the products offered for sale increased accordingly.

  • Fish industry is certainly favored by the South Beach Diet, but apparently seafood is friendly to all diets.

  • Another boost in sales was registered by the producers of “Laughing Cow" cheese, warmly recommended during the diet. The demand has reached as far as to surpass the power of supply.

The low-carb diets seem to gain more and more ground and their influence spreads faster and stronger than anything the food industry has ever seen and probably on a long-term basis too. Food-consciousness has acquired new meanings together with the power of leading businesses towards success if adopting the latest nutritional directions, or towards failure if not responding to the market demand.