The food industry has been witnessing a mass consumer shift to healthier dietary practices, which prominently include limited calorie intake that directly influences refined sugar sales in market. Preference for naturally derived, chemical-free, and unprocessed ingredients is another popularizing trend among consumers on a global level. With all this squarely impacting demand for refined white sugar, it is most likely that natural and healthier sweeteners will see drastic demand upsurge in the near future.

Enhanced spending power and increased sedentary lifestyle further lead to lifestyle disorders, which in turn, make consumers more conscious about their calorie intake. Demand for natural sugars has been predominantly increasing on grounds of its low calorie content, along with a few other health benefits. With the nutrition profile resembling that of whole foods and richness similar to that of brown sugar, date sugar has been garnering attention recently. The growing trend of plant-based food ingredients is also contributing to increasing sales of date sugar. Middle eastern countries are creating a huge market for date sugar, on the back of higher availability, easy accessibility and growing preference of consumers.

Food Industry Operators Shifting Towards Natural Sugars

Natural sugars are perceived as nutritive sweeteners are preferred for their pleasant taste. Moreover, natural sugars are easily available in naturally occurring foods that include fruits and dairy. Consumers are seeking natural sugars in their diets as they offer a multitude of health benefits. Manufacturers in food industry are increasingly using natural sugars in their products to enhance their customer base. However, these naturally occurring sugars fail to substitute their artificial sweetener counterparts in every aspect, as fruits and dairy cannot be mixed in all types of food products.

Date Sugar Entering Mainstream

Major stakeholders in the food industry are consistently striving to develop competent and natural alternatives for sugar to expand their product offerings. Moreover, sugar alternatives aid consumers to reduce their processed sugar intake. Different sugar substitutes available in market include agave, chicory, coconut sugar, honey, maple syrup, monk fruit and stevia. Date sugar is the new entrant in the sugar alternatives market which is gaining popularity owing to its high nutritive content that include vitamins, anti-oxidants, minerals and fiber. With its distinct, caramel-like flavor, date sugar has become one of the favored choices of sweeteners within the bakery and confectionary industry.

Besides its increasing application as a topping for bakery and dairy products, date sugar remains a favored brown sugar alternative that is widely used in dry rubs for meat. It is also a popular choice for specific applications such as sweetening of oatmeal.

Proven Diabetic Food

Witnessing consistently increasing acceptance as a low-glycemic sugar alternative for diabetic as well as pre-diabetic patient population, date sugar has become a proven diabetic food, as it does not significantly increase the sugar level in the body. Date sugars are eyed as a source to harness the health benefits of date fruit, including reducing the risk of acquiring diseases. It is proven to be a rich source of anti-oxidants, which compels manufacturers of healthy food and beverage products to incorporate date sugar in powdered, syrup or pureed form in a variety of products.

Some innovations that are underway such as large-scale commercialization of organic date sugar in line with the rapidly expanding natural and organic trend, would be a significant contributor to the growth of date sugar market. Moreover, introduction of the liquid date sugar is in pipeline, is also signaling an influx of opportunities set to hit the global date sugar market. Chocolate and other confectionary manufacturers have already started consuming notable volumes of date sugar, in an effort to incorporate a viable sugar substitute in their offerings.