20th November 2015 | Blog
Foodie trends for 2016 and beyond
As we've mentioned only about 100 times over the last few weeks, t plus were exhibiting at Food Matters Live conference at the ExCel arena in London this week. Its one of the UK and Europe's biggest Food and Drink shows and places a particular focus on food and drink trends. Being the FMCG geeks that we are at t plus, we love seeing new trends and first glimpses into the next big thing ( spoiler alert - we think we're one!) and the next big fad. We've seen some weird and wonderful things over the last week so wanted to report back to you guys on what may be in your fridge and pantry over the next 12 - 18 months...
What? You're starting the big reveal with boring old H20? Well the humble glass of water is undergoing some transformation - or rather replacement over the last 12 months which shows no sign of slowing down. Now we know what you're thinking, there aint much wrong with the basic stuff in the bottles or coming out of your tap, but theres a big trend in alternative sources. We've all seen coconut water put in just about everything over the last few years, but theres some new kids on the block. Principally among those is the emergence of birch and maple water which is tapped straight from the forests. Pretty cool and we're told has additional health properties over the humble coconut water, its a good alternative. Theres also the scary looking, but pretty basic taste of charcoal water. Pure black liquid is a bit weird to drink at first but again were all about to be hit with the health benefits so we might get used to the sight of it.
Read it and weep, its coming, whether we like it or not. Now don't worry, its not looking likely that Christmas lunch 2016 will be roast cockroach with all the trimmings, but this is something that is starting to be taken seriously and one way or another will come to the west. Insects are eaten en mass in large parts of the world, and due to population explosion and CO2 contribution of livestock. There are some brave entrepreneurs fronting packaged mealworms and grasshoppers, some with a little dip in chocolate for good measure. We like the baby steps approach though, in particular we met company Crobar this week that are making high protein bars that use cricket flour. Get ready people, the insects are coming to a plate near you at some point. Grubs up!
Around 25 million people in the UK suffer from some form of allergy. What started as big companies covering the basics with some horrible looking and tasting alternatives to bread and milk, continues to evolve into really special foods for the free from market. We saw amazing breads, chocolate milk, sausage rolls, beer and pizza companies at the show and in the name of good blog writing tasted them all ( note - combo of beer + chocolate milk + sausage roll in that order don't make for a happy belly ). Also some great new products in free from for the little ones. Top of that class are our buddies at Naturelly who are making gelatine free low sugar jelly juice pouches which thankfully we had pre dairy free chocolate milk binge!
Come on, you didn't really think we would write this with mentioning tea did you? Tea continues to be a big ticket item in the UK, however the landscape is changing. Black tea still accounts for 70% of the market, but it is in decline. Replacing it are green and herbal teas as more and more healthy consumers move away from high caffeine and high sugar drinks. We saw some great bubble tea and matcha at the show as those lines continue to develop and get more mainstream friendly. We also saw the big boys of the tea world introducing new flavours and packaging to their standard lines, some however ( coughlikeuscough ) are truly changing this space by blending one of a kind functional driven, healthy, vitamin enriched teas to make the old world of tea a little bit smarter. Well done those companies...