From eating less sugar to demanding more plant-based foods, research has shown that consumers are becoming more conscious about the kinds of foods they buy. Here’s a look at each of these 2018 “megatrends” along with ways you can make them your own.
1. Healthy Living
According to Euromonitor, more consumers are looking at healthy and unprocessed options including raw foods and foods that don’t have added sugars.
Savory snacks and healthy fats with minimal sugars are also becoming a major trend, along with probiotics, ancient grains, and fermented foods.
2. Premium Foods
Do you ever feel like indulging and splurging on a decadent food once in a while? It’s a common occurrence, and according to the report from Euromonitor, the types of food that people are indulging in are evolving and changing with the times.
Indulgence, the report states, is being redefined through factors like flavor, health, and ethics. Many new food companies with premium products are using health benefits and ethics as part of their strategy for marketing to a new generation of more informed consumers.
For a healthy but decadent dish that uses nutritious plant-based ingredients, try this Superfood Chocolate!
3. Ethical Living
Consumers are reportedly becoming more conscious about the ethics behind the food they’re eating, and many of them are looking for food and beverage companies to reflect their ethical standards. Another recent study found that millennials were more likely to seek out ethical snacks.
More consumers are buying plant-based foods, and a number of companies are even exploring new ways of turning food waste into nutritious food.
For some great tips on starting a plant-based diet, check out this guide.
4. Food experiences
Many consumers are now looking for ways to be more involved with their food, including custom ingredients, personalized products, and a larger variety of options in food.
For example, services like Blue Apron allow customers to get more hands-on with the process of creating their own meals, and even leave out ingredients themselves if they have an allergy or distaste for a particular food.
If you’re looking for customizable food options, try these vegan Buddha Bowls!
5. Alternative Shopping Experiences
With the rise of the internet new business models and new ways of shopping have followed. Many companies are now exploring options like meal and grocery delivery, and food or beverage subscription services.
There have been new evolutions for in-store shopping experiences as well. For example, a Whole Foods in New Jersey is using an in-store mushroom farm to offer consumers the freshest possible mushrooms along with a unique shopping experience.
6. Foods from Around the World
Western consumers are becoming more interested in unique foods from around the world. Euromonitor’s report cites rising immigration from Middle Eastern countries as a factor in the rise of Syrian and Middle Eastern flavors as a trend for western countries.
If you’d like to eat some Middle Eastern foods for yourself, try some of these recipes!
7. Affordable Quality
While consumers are looking for higher quality ingredients and more ethical companies, they’re also looking to save money. According to the report, this trend is especially focused on shrinking household demographics. For example, the report said, the number of single-father households has doubled in the U.S. in the last two decades.
If you’re looking for ways to eat healthy on a budget, try these tips for buying a week of groceries at Whole Foods for $50.
8. The Rise of Food Tech
Technology is a huge factor in current market trends, and that includes the food industry. New tech has lead to new methods of growing, preparing, and distributing food, including ventures like vertical farming operations.
Apps like Food Monster are also changing the way people eat, offering new ways to discover recipes and create meal plans to optimize their health and budget.
Technology can even influence what foods are popular. For example, one factor in the popularity of ingredients like blue spirulina, matcha, charcoal, and turmeric are their vibrant, Instagram-friendly colors. Here are some ways to make a photo-ready meal with turmeric.
These food trends are focused on packaged foods, but you can just as easily take some of them as inspiration for what to make at home.
Try getting creative with some flavors from around the world, looking for local and ethically sourced ingredients, and of course, experimenting with new healthy ingredients.
For more plant-based cooking info, download the Food Monster App, which is available for both Android and iPhone and can also be found on Instagram and Facebook. The app has more than 8,000 plant-based, allergy-friendly recipes, and subscribers gain access to ten new recipes per day.
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