Nestle Unveils New Frozen-Food Brand, Vital Pursuit, for GLP-1 Dieters

Nestle Unveils New Frozen-Food Brand, Vital Pursuit, for GLP-1 Dieters

Nestle is launching a new frozen food brand called Vital Pursuit, targeting the growing market of consumers who use GLP-1 drugs such as Ozempic and Wegovy.

Over the past year, fad weight loss and diabetes drugs have become popular again as more options come to the market and celebrities such as Oprah Winfrey and Elon Musk endorse them.

According to a recent survey by KFF, a health policy research institute, about one in eight U.S. adults report having used a GLP-1 drug at some point. About half of these Americans, or about 6% of U.S. adults, are currently using one of these drugs.

According to a Morgan Stanley study, the total number of U.S. consumers taking the drug could increase to 31.5 million by 2035, or 9% of the total population.

As the drug’s popularity soars, investors are increasingly concerned about what the drug’s rise could mean for food and beverage companies and fast-food chains. People taking this medication usually eat less often because they have fewer cravings, want more protein, and eat less sugary and fatty foods. John Furner, CEO of Walmart
US, told Bloomberg in October that people who buy GLP-1 drugs at pharmacies buy less food and typically have fewer calories.

But Nestlé sees Vital Pursuit as an opportunity to appeal to these consumers.

“The reality is, for the last 25 years, the diet has been dying, in a sense. … For me, what we’ve done is actually given consumers a new tool that actually gives them confidence and success on this journey,” Nestle’s North America CEO Steve Presley told CNBC.

The new brand’s first 12-item lineup includes frozen trays of whole-wheat pasta and protein-rich pasta, as well as sandwich melts and pizza. The product contains one or more important nutrients such as protein, calcium, and iron. The company will sell Vital Pursuit products for under $4.99 and will also offer gluten-free options.

Although Vital Pursuit’s packaging does not include any reference to the GLP-1 drug, Nestlé said on social media that it intends to link the brand more directly to the drug.

The new product line will be available in the refrigeration section in the fourth quarter.

In recent years, Nestlé has been trying to target more health-conscious consumers. In 2018, the company sold its U.S. confectionery business, which included brands such as Butterfinger, Crunch and Laffy Taffy, to Ferrero for $2.8 billion. Nestlé’s grocery business, which includes brands such as Stauffer’s and Toll House, accounts for just 14.5% of its U.S. sales.

Nestlé already owns Lean Cuisine, which was founded in 1981 as a healthier alternative to other frozen foods. Since the Lean brand focuses on consumers who want to limit their calorie intake, the company decided to create a new brand to reach GLP-1 users. However, people taking GLP-1 drugs may want to consume more nutrients such as protein, which can reduce muscle loss caused by the drug.

“The consumer research shows that there are certain nutrients and certain macros that need to be delivered to actually help the consumers stay healthy along the journey of the GLP-1 treatment,” Presley said.

Swiss-based Nestlé’s stock price has fallen 16% this year, dropping its market value to $278 billion. The company expects global growth to slow this year as inflation-weary consumers stop buying its products.

Topics #diabetes #Frozen-Food Brand #GLP-1 Dieters #market #Nestle

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