"As recently as February none of us had any idea 2020 would be a year of fundamental change for the food industry"

"As recently as February none of us had any idea 2020 would be a year of fundamental change for the food industry"

In a year that turned the world on its axis, there was plenty to chew over, not least in our sector, where Covid-19 has had a significant impact on the market and on consumer behaviour. How the virus could shape the industry featured heavily in the list of the top ten most-read opinion pieces on just-food.com in 2020.

Why change is inevitable in the wake of Covid-19
In April, just-food's US columnist and industry veteran Victor Martino set out what he sees as the four stages of change that will impact the country's food industry – with analysis that will resonate beyond US borders.

Nestle's Fairtrade move is wrong – and very wrong now
July saw just-food's contributing editor Ben Cooper expressed his opposition to Nestlé's decision to end Fairtrade certification for its flagship KitKat chocolate brand in the UK and Ireland.

Don't write off emerging brands amid Big Food's Covid-19 bounce
In the early months of the pandemic, many of Big Food's legacy brands were having their day in the sun in the US, boosted by pantry-loading. In May, Victor Martino argued challenger brands could still – and would – compete.

French fries in China – big opportunities and high hurdles
In February, just-food's China columnist Peter Peverelli explored the local market for French fries, a category growing rapidly but with barriers to entry for foreign suppliers.

Why Tesco's right to be cautious about compostable packaging
March saw David Burrows look at the details Tesco announced on the packaging it wanted suppliers to use in the UK.

How Covid-19 might shape consumer trends in China
Packaged-food companies mulling the post-Covid-19 consumer will be watching China with interest, Peter Peverelli wrote in April.

Aryzta's options in wake of investor battle
The embattled European bakery giant endured months of distractions and wrangling between management and its largest shareholders over the composition of its board and, in September, Simon Harvey looked at what could come next for the manufacturer.

Covid-19's snacking consumers spark D2C flurry
How consumers shop for food has changed in some very noticeable ways during the pandemic – and the online channel is one area to have grown in importance, as GlobalData explored in May.

Blackstone's Oatly backing may unsettle some but there are benefits
In late summer, dairy-alternative darling Oatly faced criticism for accepting investment from private-equity giant Blackstone – but, argued Dean Best, those who want a more sustainable food system should see the advantages.

How Covid-19 might shape food M&A
In December last year, M&A advisor Stefan Kirk outlined on just-food why food M&A had dried up, attributing a statistical decline in deals to the absence of any recession looming on the horizon. Out of the blue, Covid-19 arrived to add to that downturn but, in May, Stefan argued the virus might provide the stimulus needed to shake more life into the M&A market once the epidemic recedes.