Every January, experts trot out the usual lists predicting what the following 12 months will bring. They try to answer lot of questions: What innovations will change the way and manner in which food is produced and processed? What concepts are available for improving sustainability? What will be the next must-have new ingredient? What flavours, what aromas, what textures will redefine what it means to eat in the next year? And how can all this be combined into a well-functioning system?
New trends in any branch of the industry are necessary for the right direction of the producers and R & D divisions, so the customers´ needs are satisfied and new products launched on the market are successful and are accepted by the consumers. However, if anybody perform the review of the new forthcoming trends, it will find that the new trends differ on each individual source. However, some points may be the same.
In this article we summarized some trends in food industry for 2022 from two different sources.
The first source we aimed on their prediction of food trends is Kerrys´ Kerry health and nutrition institute who introduced 10 Key Health and Nutrition Trends 2022.
- Plant-based future – plant-based products or plan- based alternatives to meats sustainable increasing. Therefore, there are 2 main challenges in plant-based category product. Taste and food safety. Plant based alternatives are characterised with their specific taste depending on the protein source and the consumers want excellent taste of consumed foods.
- Botanical boom – botanicals – plant derived extract are natural products with positive effect on overall health and emotional wellbeing are used in foods or beverages. There is increasing awareness of consumers about the positive effect of botanicals on human health. Lot of botanicals are awarded with health claim approved by EFSA, however there is still lot of botanicals under the research.
- Mood, cognition, and sleep – people are more awareness with products related to mental well-being. The products focused on mental well-being are top among consumers. The adaptogens or nootropics like ashwaganda, ginseng are more familiar among consumers. Better sleeping relates with good mental well-being. Some nutrients play an important role in sleeping. When someone suffer sleep deficiency, the deficiency of some nutrients may occur.
- Microbiome – beyond digestive health – in the last decade the science brought new information about the gut microbiome. It seems that there will be similar also in the future. However, the consumers aware the importance of the gut health, and probiotics are connected with reducing of bloating or GI discomfort. Besides others there are many studies supported the role of probiotics with immunity, weight management, heart health, blood sugar management, and mood.
- Body-positive weight management – consumers have new mindset regarding the weight management. The new mind set is not focused on reduction diets however “what can my body do?” The products must be not only low in calories however, they must fit also other issues related to body performance or improvement of health e.g. protein or fibre content for satiety of something for immunity boosting.
- Nutrition accountability amplified – this trend is connected with healthiness food available. In many countries there are mandatory and voluntary front-of-pack nutrition signpost labelling, taxes on sugar sweetened beverages, advertising for sugar reduction etc. Similarly European union has plans to propose mandatory front of pack nutrition label.
- Immune health – with pandemic COVID 19 growth the need of consumers to boost their immunity. The traditional ingredients like vitamin C, D, zinc they are known to support immunity, however there are many other ingredients like yeast beta-glucans, probiotics, echinacea for immunity support. The ingredients for immunity support should be chosen based on the scientific evidence.
- Personalised nutrition – personalised nutrition based on requirements of individual according to the specific DNA, microbiome and biochemistry become more actual and is not just the distant future. Each individual has some specific dietary requirements which are necessary to full fill. Personalised nutrition helps to understand body responds to so that we can choose the most effective foods to eat for unique physiologies.
- Technology and the future of food – expected increase of population to 10 billion in 2050 open the area for new food science and technologies which provide enough food for the people and together decrease carbon emissions and environmental input e.g. cultivation of meat or precision fermentation have the ability to produce ingredients like animal proteins, vitamins, or minerals without the environmental inputs.
- Active Ageing – this topic is connected with an increasing age of population. As we age the changes in our body occurs. Nobody knows how long will be alive, however everyone may try to do the best for healthy and active aging. Higher intake of protein for reducing muscle mass, ensure of cognitive health, memory, joint health, and hydration are important to healthy ageing.
Columbus global as a second studied source introduced for 2022 total 8 food trends. One half is focused to consumers while second one to process and technology trends.
- Sustainable practices and mindset – this trend relate with climate change and sustainable mindset of producers. There are producers who have committed to reduce plastic packaging within production of their products. The packaging provenance is become important as the quality of the product.
- High quality flexitarian food – the reductionism or decreasing consumption of meat, eggs and dairy products is increasingly trend among consumers. Plant based or mat free sales is predicting to growth approximately by 89% to 2024 in comparison with 2018. Besides other, consumers expect high quality of meat, egg or dairy products. This trend related also with reduction of carbon footprint.
- Functional foods – consumers are seeking not only good taste, smell or good look, however their expect that the food will improve consumers´ health.
- More experimental breakfast – this trend relates with more time spend in home resulting from hybrid model of working, including home office.
- Tightening supply chains – there is necessary to ensure continuous supply of energy raw materials, products both for chains and for producers, by flexible sources distribution strategies and modernising of manufacturing operations.
- Wider use of automatization – in the new modern society the automatization is necessary, due to saving the cost, enhancement of quality, increasing food safety or better efficiency and reduced waste.
- More robust quality management and traceability processes – with the greater demand for healthier ingredients and greater quality of foods, the system of quality management and traceability should be more robust. e.g. you can see where each ingredient has come from and at which point it entered your supply chain. You can monitor whether it’s abiding by your sustainability goals.
- Waste reduction – relate with greater sustainability however it can affect the economy of business as well. Therefore, the waste reduction management will be more important not only in 2022 however in the next years as well.
There are dozens of other food trends we agree will gain traction in 2022, all of which you can find with a simple Google search for "2022 Food Trends." In spite of the fact, that there are different topics in trends, but if we should mark one main trend which ties many of the current trends together, it’s an awareness of the need to lessen food’s impact on the environment.