2023 CAGNY conference highlights

Key trends in the consumer products industry

Toward the end of February, several of the world’s top consumer packaged goods (CPG) companies gathered for the annual Consumer Analyst Group of New York (CAGNY) conference in sunny Boca Raton, Florida. We were there to take it all in (and got help from an AI-assisted transcript review after the fact). Here’s the big picture on the trending topics, along with how they have changed from last year.

The CPG industry focuses on profitable growth

At CAGNY 2023, CPG companies discussed how they would try to solve what has become a more complex equation. They are attempting to balance a formula that seems to require spending more to reengage with consumers while at the same time trying to increase productivity and do more with less to protect margins.1

Please continue reading for insights gathered from 27 CPG companies on their pursuit of profitable growth in what could be another challenging year. And download our year-over-year comparative analysis chart for the top trending topics discussed at CAGNY 2023.

CAGNY 2023 roundup

Worth watching

In addition to the major trends, a few other topics popped out in one way or another during the event this year.

  • Workforce – Discussion of labor shortages and topics like employee engagement dropped this year relative to last. The drop may reflect expectations for easing the labor market or the addition of automation which could relieve some hiring pressure.
  • Plant-based food – While about three in 10 companies discussed the plant-based food trend this year, emphasis was down relative to last year’s conference. The long run potential for the category still sounds strong, but an ingredient company mentioned some of their customers cancelled new product launches.
  • Humanization of pets – CPG companies with pet offerings discussed “pet parents” and “humanization” as trends. As people start making purchase decisions for their pets as if they were human family members, it could completely open up what they will buy and how much they will spend.
  • Traceability – A few CPG companies in the food space had to mention a recall affected their profitability. We may see more companies investing in improved tracking and traceability to prevent and mitigate these issues.
  • CPG loyalty – CPGs want to know their end consumers better. We heard a few companies tout digital loyalty programs, including some delivered in partnership with third-party apps. These programs are not always about special coupons or discounts. They can also be about community, experiences, or expression. CPGs likely need this data to keep up with the changing consumer and personalize marketing.


The authors would like to thank Celine Fenech, Manogna Marthi, Kianna Evelyn Sanchez, and Nandika Kaura for their efforts in the creation of this paper.


1 Deloitte 2023 Consumer Products Outlook
2 Ibid.
3Fresh food as medicine for the heartburn of high prices,” Deloitte Insights, September 2022

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