Artisanal jerky, craft-style fizz and Jewish cuisine are just a few of the food trends to watch heading into the New Year, according to THP’s 2017 Flavour & Trend Forecast.
The Toronto-based agency, along with its in-house team of culinary experts, is releasing its anticipated list for the second year in a row. “Whether you are a marketer for a food or beverage brand, restaurant operator, or just enjoy cooking or eating, these are the trends to have on your radar for 2017,” said Sabrina Falone, Director of Culinary Innovation at THP.
With over 2,500 recipes being developed each year for top food, beverage and Consumer Packaged Goods (CPG) companies across North America and the U.K., staying ahead of the culinary curve is imperative to THP’s operations. “Our customers look to us to develop recipes inspired by current and forward-looking ingredient trends,” says Amanda Riva, CEO of THP. “Doing this helps ensure that the content we’re developing resonates with a brand’s core consumer, as well as the consumer group it’s looking to grow.”
Particularly as brands continue to focus on millennials, Riva notes that it is important to focus as much as 40% of owned content at the growth consumer group. In THP’s case, this means incorporating ingredient trends before they hit their point of maturity in the market. “It’s our job to know where trends are in their lifecycle and to keep our finger on the pulse when it comes to consumer consumption habits.”
A few of the items hot off of THP’s top 10 list for 2017 include:
Fat is back
Forget fat-free ingredients. Butter usage is on the rise, and increased by 8% in 2015 compared to 2014. “There’s a shift back to fuller, richer foods – think full-fat dairy, butter and ghee – influenced by a more conscious consumer who is looking to include less processed and more clean, natural ingredients into their diet,” says Falone.
Fifty-six per cent of global consumers want to see more craft-style beverages on their cocktail menus1. As a result, fancy fizzy sodas paired with fresh flavours like passion fruit, lavender and more natural ingredients are finding their way back into the glass and elevating the drink experience.
50 shades of black
“Activated charcoal is a new ingredient that’s popping up everywhere, from your morning juice routine to your burger bun, and even in your pizza crust,” adds Falone. “Don’t shy away from dark hued foods next year, lending well to familiar classics like squid ink pasta or risotto, which have not gone out of style.”
In the last five years, jerky consumption has jumped by 18%2. Increasingly, consumers are looking for protein-packed snacks that are portable and easy on the wallet – and jerky fits the bill. But forget what you’d find at the gas station – companies are shifting their focus to artisanal preparation methods that features bolder, globally inspired flavours.
The new Jewish
Today’s Jewish cuisine is blending old world flavours with modern twists. This trend is being popularized by a new generation of chefs who are focusing on transforming Jewish classics into beloved favourites with an elevated update, such as matzo ball ramen.
Other ingredients and meal trends that just missed the top 10 list but are worth keeping on the radar include vegan charcuterie, Hatch chile, sumac, alternate protein options like insects, algae and mushrooms, and even wine in a can.
To read the full report and top 10 list for 2017, visit www.thpagency.com.
About the THP Flavour & Trend Forecast
The second annual Flavour & Trend Forecast was developed with the support of THP’s in-house test kitchen team of 19 professionals who have more than 114 years of combined culinary expertise, and who work with over 380 active food and beverage customers to develop thousands of recipes each year. The forecast highlights the top 10 culinary trends for 2017, along with five trends to watch throughout the year.
THP is the leading full service creative and communications agency that specializes in offering consumer brands a transparent, flexible a la carte pricing model for content creation and communication services. With over 380 customers across North America and the U.K., the one-stop shop is committed to making every customer a crazy raving fan of its model by delivering exceptional quality every single time.