Checking in with my 2021 Food Trends Forecast
In the last quarter of 2020, I created my 2021 Food Trends Forecast. As we are more than half-way through 2021, I thought it would be fun checking in with my 2021 food trends forecast to see which predictions have been on target so far.
The Word on the Street
As a result of the forecasting that rolled out for 2021, I highlighted three reports of interest: McCormick’s Flavor Forecast; Whole Foods Market’s Top Food Trends; and Innova Market Insights Top 10 Food and Beverage Trends to Accelerate Innovation in 2021.
McCormick’s Flavor Forecast 2021
From this report, I focused on three out of the four themes: 1) sweet and seasonal satisfaction; 2) global finds; and 3) empowered eating and drinking. And today (July 2021), I believe all are on trend, particularly empowered eating and drinking.
Empowered Eating and Drinking
Health and wellness have always been top-of-mind as my business focus. McCormick’s team describe empowered eating and drinking as: Lifestyle and food are more intertwined than ever before, but the flavour does not need to be compromised to meet nutritional needs. We continue to see this movement as we power through 2021.
- I have always agreed and supported this trend over the course of my business life. I’ve written about it and been interviewed numerous times including this article published Canadian Grocer in September 2020.
Whole Foods Market’s Top Ten Food Trends for 2021
This report ranked their top trends from one to ten: 1) Well-Being Is Served; 2) Epic Breakfast Every Day; 3) Basics on Fire; 4) Coffee Beyond the Mug; 5) Baby Food, All Grown Up; 6) Upcycled Foods (stay tuned for my next Bakers Journal Final Proof Column); 7) Oil Change; 8) Boozed-Up Booch; 9) The Mighty Chickpea; and 10) Fruit and Veggie Jerky. Last year my top picks included 1, 4, and 7, which are still on trend, especially Well-Being is Served.
Well-Being is Served
The lines are blurring between the supplement and grocery aisles, and this trend is accelerating in 2021. Therefore, this means heightened interest superfoods, probiotics, and vitamins. Suppliers are incorporating functional ingredients like vitamin C, mushrooms and adaptogens to foster a calm headspace and support the immune system. For obvious reasons, people want this pronto.
- In June 2020, I was interviewed by David Orgel about it for his article in Drug Store News and it continues to be a top trend of 2021.
Innova Market Insights Top 10 Food and Beverage Trends to Accelerate Innovation in 2021
This annual top ten report provided the trends in response to the ever-evolving and consumer-centric food and beverage industry. The new trends for 2021 were: 1) Transparency Triumphs; 2) Plant-Forward; 3) Tailored to Fit; 4) New Omnichannel Eating; 5) In Tune with Immune; 6) Nutrition Hacking; 7) Mood: The Next Occasion; 8) Product Mashups: When Trends Collide; 9) Modern Nostalgia and 10) Age of the Influencer. I might disagree with 10 – Age of the Influencer depending on the topic and credibility during a global health crisis, however, my top picks included 1, 2, and 5. Once again, all still on track half-way through 2021 and are topics I continue to write and speak about. Let’s highlight In Tune with Immune.
In Tune with Immune
Ongoing anxiety stemming from COVID-19 has encouraged consumers to prioritize their immune health into 2021. Similarly, a recent survey conducted by TricorBraun found there have been consumer behaviour shifts due to the covid crisis. As a result, both Canadian and American consumers are taking more nutritional products as preventative health measures including immune health since the onset of the pandemic
- Most importantly, due to the global health crisis, this trend is top of mind for consumers. From a health professional and food industry expert point of view – check out my blog Immune Health 101.
Although none of us have a crystal ball, having been in the industry for over two decades and credentialed as a health professional, my trend picks from these reports are on track as we navigate our way out of the global pandemic and aim to enjoy the rest of 2021.