We know that food follows trends, regardless of how off-the-wall and insane it might be. Case in point: the bacon-flavored everything. But regardless of how strange it might seem, the fact remains that a trend is a trend, and those trends come from somewhere, start with some concept that, when presented in the right way to the public at large, starts a massive wave that everyone seems inclined to follow.
One of the wiser trends of late has been cleaner eating—loading up on foods that are more nutritious and more sustainably sourced. Foods that resemble more of what our ever-so-untrendy predecessors thought nothing of when they went out to the market (or their gardens) to buy colorful fruits and vegetables, meats from the butcher, grains and seeds and beans…the simpler, the better. They used real food and purer ingredients to make the dishes they put on the table, and that turn back to simplicity—without reducing our choices to flavorless, “rustic” food—is one that should stay the course as we all focus on becoming happier, healthier people.
Much like fashion’s trends are forecasted each year, food trends are given their own annual forecast in a study conducted by the Culinary Visions Panel. Hailed for its work in providing food-focused and trends research, their annual Food and Flavor Forecast helps determine what foods and flavors consumers will navigate toward and what the food industry should focus their efforts on providing. According to CVP’s research, there are five major trends set to take the food scene by storm in the new year.
PLATE UP WITH PURPOSE
People more focused on eating nutritionally dense meals will, as a result, be looking for foods that satisfy their hunger as well as offer a heavy hit of nutrition. According to the 2019 Food and Flavor Forecast, most people will be eating specific foods for specific dietary functions and expect more from their plates.
Reduction vS. Restriction
Rather than completely avoiding certain foods, many people will focus more on limiting the foods they eat. The study has shown that more people have the goal simply to maintain a healthier lifestyle and are not so hyper-focused on strict diets to keep their weight in check.
The environment has become a great concern in many ways, so efforts to be more eco-friendly have resulted in reduced packaging as well as the sourcing of ethical ingredients. The more local and the less manufacturing involved, the better.
Healthy, Anytime Anywhere
We eat out, we eat in, we grab and munch…Regardless of where and when we eat, people want to have access to healthy foods. That said, convenient or “fast foods” are expected to become healthier to meet the demand. So-called veg-centric foods on these menus will also have more of a presence to satisfy the desire to incorporate a more plant-based diet, though meat is still not something most people are willing to forego.
Global flavors and international ingredients are all the rage, so expect to see a greater focus on the cuisines of Latin America, Asia, and the Mediterranean—with special attention on ingredients utilized in the cooking of Ecuador, Peru, Brazil, Korea, the Philippines, and Morocco.