2022: Food Trends on the Rise

It’s our favorite time of the year. The time of year where we look into the future and discuss what food trends are going to define 2022. Last year, we forecasted that sustainability, transparency, and better-for-you ingredients were going to take off in 2021 – and well, they sure did! The past two years have really shined a light on how food & beverage can help increase our overall well-being and can affect our communities and the world around us. 2022 isn’t going to be much different. A lot of the same trends will be prevalent in the coming years. However, what we will see is a heightened interest in specific flavor profiles, complex ingredients, and continued interest in modern sustainability practices.  Here are 4 food trends we are most excited to see take off in 2022:

1 – Micronutrients

Functionality has been a hot topic for a few years now. Consumers are extremely interested in food & beverage products that not only taste great but also serve multifunctional health benefits. In the past year, prebiotics and probiotics have been huge trendsetters, and we’ll continue to see them through the next few years. However, in 2022, we’ll start to see a more diverse array of micronutrients. Tastewise recently reported that adaptogens, electrolytes, nootropics, and postbiotics are all areas of interest for the modern shopper. Health is at the top of many shoppers’ minds. However, healthy ingredients are subjective and different for each shopper. Thus, we’ll start to see a growing array of functional food & beverage products with a multitude of functional ingredients.

2 – Upcycled

Sustainability is (and should be) a continued focus for every food & beverage brand. As we mentioned last year, shoppers want to feel good about the brands they purchase – and shoppers care about their environmental impact. Next year, we will see several food trends emerge with sustainability in mind. However, the one we are most excited to see more of is upcycled food & beverage products. Brands such as The Ugly Company and reGrained are innovating the food system by finding new ways to use utilize what would traditionally be considered waste. By limiting how much food is wasted, these brands are helping to create a more sustainable and lucrative food system with products that not only taste great but are also great for the environment.

To learn more about upcycled foods, please read our blog The Future of Food is Upcycled

3 – Complex Flavors

In Whole Foods’ predictions for the top food trends of 2022, they listed a few buzzworthy ingredients and flavors that we will see a lot more of in the new year. These flavors include turmeric, hibiscus, yuzu, and moringa. All of these flavors speak to what we believe is a bigger trend of the growing popularity of complex and interesting ingredients and flavors. With a renewed interest in home cooking, many shoppers have experimented and explored new flavor profiles. In 2022, we will see this idea move into CPG products as brands introduce new iterations of existing products that have more complex flavors and ingredients – some of which may also be functional.

To learn more about home cooking has expanded customer’s palettes, please read our blog The Food Trend BOOM: How hobbies are changing the way people shop

4 – Functional and Tasty

With functionality being a throughline for many trends this year, consumer perception of functional food & beverage products has started to shift. Containing functional ingredients is one thing, but having functional properties and tasting great is another. Health foods have had a long history of not being the best tasting options on the market. And although that isn’t necessarily the case anymore, brands still face an uphill battle in educating shoppers about the new wave of functional products. With brands in this market expanding their distribution and entering national retailers, now’s the perfect chance to highlight your brand’s greatest asset.

ChefsBest is a food and beverage industry marketing resource that helps brands make first-class taste-related content, distinguished by our core value of taste claims validation represented by the ChefsBest mark. With turnkey programs for qualifying brands, we provide digital content featuring our greatest assets—ChefsBest Master Tasters and our proprietary Sensory Attribute Quality Analysis ™—so that brand managers can tout their greatest asset that consumers care most about: taste. To learn more about our services, contact us today.

To stay up-to-date with trends and news in the food & beverage industry please follow us on social media: FacebookTwitterInstagram, and LinkedIn – and check out our previous blogs.