2019 Conversation Analysis

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The International Stevia Council conducted research through analysis of the online conversation and search trends to identify and better understand the attitudes and perceptions around stevia in English and Spanish speaking countries. The analysis compared data from 2013-2015 versus more current conversations from 2015-2017.

  • There has been a dramatic increase in the total amount of the conversation (mentions of stevia in conjunction with the selected keywords) in both English (254% increase over the previous period) and Spanish (200% increase).
  • Amount of positive sentiment has increased by 5% in English coming up to 36% total. Positive sentiment of the conversation in Spanish has seen an even larger increase of 11% which makes it a total of 34%.
  • Negative sentiment was mainly focused on the aftertaste in the drinks (e.g. “Keto, coffee”); people expressing frustration with their diets not working has also contributed to the negative sentiment. Finally, mentions regarding cancer (that generally have negative sentiment) have contributed to that as well.
  • Channel distribution in English has changed significantly: Instagram and Tumblr have taken away 37% of the conversation from Twitter; mentions in the news have increased by 9%. While total mentions on forums have gone down by 11%, Reddit has reclaimed 7% of the total mentions.
  • The following sites are among the prominent ones driving conversation in English: My Fitness Pal, MyProana*, Healing Well**, Diabetes Daily, and Obesity Help.
  • The majority of the conversation in English is happening in the US (84.5%) while the majority of the conversation in Spanish is being driven by Spain. (44%).
  • Topics of the conversation have seen similar changes in both English and Spanish (more prominently in English): less mentions in relation to recipes and taste and more in conjunction with weight loss assistance and diabetes/blood sugar management.

Stevia Conversations Monitored

  • References to “natural” appear in 29% of all posts in English, while reference to “artificial” only in 15%.
  • Similar trends have emerged in the search queries: “stevia + diabetes”, “stevia + Keto”; however the search realm is still being dominated by queries related to stevia brands and recipes.
  • When compared to sucralose, aspartame and sucrose, stevia still remains a much more talked about topic.

Topics of the Conversation: English Speaking Countries

United States, Canada and United Kingdom
  • Stevia is being talked about a lot in conjunction with weight loss and dieting, specifically low calorie and Keto diets.
  • Stevia is mentioned frequently as a healthy alternative for diabetics since it helps control blood sugar levels.
  • Stevia is being discussed as “a way of stopping to eat sugar” often in relation to the decrease in cravings.
  • When it comes to snacks and desserts stevia is being mentioned as a healthier sweet taste alternative.
  • People are also actively discussing making their own stevia liquid concentrate often using it as a hashtag (#stevia).

Topics of the Conversation: Spanish Speaking Countries

Spain and Latin America (Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Mexico, Nicaragua, Panama, Paraguay, Peru, Puerto Rico, Uruguay, Venezuela)
  • People are talking about using stevia as a healthier sweetener alternative in their recipes for foods such as shakes, coffee drinks, pastries, cakes, and ice cream.
  • Stevia is talked about a lot for its use in many morning foods and drinks like pancakes, waffles, oatmeal and coffee.
  • Stevia is primarily mentioned in conjunction with diabetes because it is said to be a healthier sugar alternative for diabetics.
  • Stevia is seen as a natural sweetener that is better for those on a diet. The fact that it has less calories is also an incentive for people to use it.
  • Milk, coffee and chocolate are shown because many Spanish speaking countries like to enjoy their coffee with milk in the mornings and with chocolate. Stevia lets them enjoy it in a healthier way.

Trend Comparison: English

  • Monitoring the conversation for four key sweeteners in 2017-2018, the data shows that Stevia mentions consistently rank higher than sucralose, aspartame and sucrose.
  • Sucrose has been monitored with much more erratic data points.

Where the Stevia Conversation is Taking Place


Copyright 2019 International Stevia Council

Disclaimer

Compared conversational data from the 2015 gap analysis (later “previous period” – June 2013 – September 2015) to the 2019 conversation analysis (January 2017 – December 2018) of English speaking countries; 

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