Trips to the supermarket are often rushed — we simply grab and go. But the other day I had a little more time to focus. I noticed matcha tea offerings, ginger-infused ice cream, sun-dried tomato and basil mashed cauliflower, almond milk with cashews, and pasta made with greens. The meat department featured wild boar roast and ground bison, right next to beef chuck. My shopping experience shows how some trends evolve beyond the specialty food aisle into the mainstream.
Last month we introduced a two-part series featuring the Culinary Trendscape 2018. In case you missed it or want to review the initial two stages, visit Translating Culinary Trends into Practice – Emerging Trends. This month, we look at what happens in stages 3-6, what’s trending in these stages now, and how you can use these trends. In later stages, trends gain broader appeal and more people are familiar with them.
Stage 3: Adoption – Gains Traction with a Larger Audience
Trends gain traction with a larger group of consumers at this stage. People outside of the culinary world and foodie circles experiment with these trends and they show up on more restaurant menus and niche brands.
What's Trending Now:
Botanicals – Ginger, matcha and turmeric were top Google searches in beverage for 2017. Chef Carrie notes “Turmeric and matcha were confined to tea and tea adjacent beverages until the last few years when their potential health benefits became motivation for their inclusion elsewhere.” Intense herb flavors in “feel-good drinks” now expand into desserts, partly because of approachability and more people are experimenting with the flavors.
Meat Matters – Americans are more thoughtful about meat with a desire to use the entire animal and thus reduce waste. They also want meats that deliver on taste and consider portion control. Obscure meats like bison, venison and other game meat are gaining popularity. Think Campbell’s ® Chunky Maxx TM Bison Bacon Burger Soup, venison jerky and beyond.
Put it into Practice: Nutrition concerns and questions are likely to pop up with your clients and social groups at this stage. Be knowledgeable and research these trends. If you have a large audience of early adopters, you could include some of this information in your social media posts. For example, read up on the common botanicals trending, such as matcha, and review different cuts of meat for best cooking methods. Compare the nutrition profile of game meats.
Stage 4: Mainstream – Well Accepted in Many Households
At this stage the food trend is grounded and can be found almost everywhere. Most foods you find in the supermarket would be in stage four of a trend evolution.
What's Trending Now:
Alternatives Rule - As the shift towards plant-based eating continues, new alternative products are popping up on store shelves constantly, with multiple varieties and availability well beyond the specialty sections. You may notice alternatives to wheat flour, crust using cauliflower, riced veggies, and dairy alternatives like Bolthouse Farms® launch of Plant Protein Milk made with pea protein.
Limited Edition Innovation - This trend features seasonal pumpkin spice lattes, Pepperidge Farm® Baked Apple with Caramel Swirl bread and Campbell’s® Limited Edition Original Recipe Beefsteak Tomato Soup as examples. People who crave food experiences are key players in the advancement of this trend.
Put it into Practice: Become the expert by this stage. You should be confident in your knowledge, and be able to speak of nutritional benefits or allergen concerns. Test out these flavors and trends in your own recipes, offer samples for clients and be able to explain any research related to them. For example, you should be able to compare and contrast cow’s milk to alternatives like almond, coconut or pea protein milk to help consumers make an informed choice.
Stage 5: Established – Reaches Mass Audience
Trends that reach this stage are likely here to stay. People widely accept trends in this stage and find them throughout U.S. markets. However, the trend still is not global. Consider yogurt, even though it is well-established, this staple food re-invented itself with the introduction of Greek yogurt, full-fat versions, and even non-dairy options. Yogurt mania may be commonplace in the U.S. but Greek varieties are not found often in other countries as near as Canada.
Stage 6: Expanded – Reaches Global Audience
Few trends reach this stage of expanded. Chef Carrie used Coke® soda and pizza as examples, meaning you can find them practically anywhere in developed countries. Countries put their own flair on pizza, but still identify it as such. Keep in mind, few foods or beverages reach the coveted place on the global stage.
Be trend ready,
Carrie’s BioChef Carrie Welt joined Campbell as Senior Chef, Campbell’s Culinary and Baking Institute (CCBI), in September 2012. Carrie is a passionate culinary educator, with expertise in culinary arts applications for research and development and nutrition. She handles culinary education, plans strategic internal and external events, and supports the soup and simple meals portfolio. Carrie recently served as interim Director of Research & Development with Habit, co-creating a nutrition-focused food program for the unique Campbell-funded start-up’s fresh delivery service. She has also led culinary development, from conception through launch, for Prego Farmers’ Market® dinner sauces. Carrie is a Certified Chef de Cuisine (CCC) through the American Culinary Federation. Carrie earned her bachelor’s degree in computer science and German from Skidmore College, and then earned her associate of occupational studies degree from The Culinary Institute of America, and her master of management degree in hospitality from the School of Hotel Administration at Cornell University.
Kate’s BioKate received her bachelor's degree in dietetics from the University of Delaware and completed her dietetic internship at Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center. She has over ten years of experience in a variety of nutrition-related practice areas including clinical nutrition, weight management counseling, health and wellness and nutrition education. Kate has worked as a nutrition consultant to the Campbell Soup Company since 2005.