CHICAGO -- A record number of new consumer packaged goods hit store shelves worldwide last year, according to the Mintel Global New Products Database. About 182,000 new products were introduced globally, a 17% increase from 2005. In the U.S., more than 17,000 new food and 14,000 nonfood products were introduced, up from 16,000 and 13,000 in 2005, respectively. Health and wellness dominated the new product trends. “The significant shift to more products with better-for-you positioning helped boost new product launches in 2006," said David Jago, director of Mintel Custom Solutions, in a statement. While new products with low-carb claims continued to decrease, increases were seen in low/no trans fat and gluten-free claims. Likewise, companies placed stronger emphasis on allergen-free, Fair Trade and organic foods. Mintel is supplier of consumer, product and media intelligence.