The Food Channel has released its list of food-related trends for the new year, predicting that the future will be “local,” “individual,” and “valuable.” Read on for a deeper look at their prognostications.
- The canning comeback. More people will start canning, pickling and preserving as they focus more on food safety and desire to hang on to that garden-fresh taste a little longer. Canned items also make great, inexpensive gifts.
- Men in aprons. As more men than women lost jobs in the recession, many couples found the woman became the breadwinner and the man the bread buyer, or baker. TV’s male celebrity chefs have also helped make it cool for guys to don aprons.
- Local somewhere. These days, “local” refers as much to the entrepreneurial spirit of growers and restaurateurs as it does to geography. Someone, somewhere, is bringing fresh products to the table, and consumers want to know where it comes from.
- Don’t ask, don’t tell. New government regulations, although well-intended, have led to too much information—like calorie counts and ingredient lists—on restaurant menus and food packages. Sometimes, consumers just don’t want to know.
- Appetite for apps. With smartphones all the rage, food apps are popping up right and left. Get recipes and cooking tips, make reservations, or find out how long the wait is at your favorite restaurant.
- Small is the new big business. Successful food giants will use social media to get closer to customers. Offerings will be scaled back to a small number of things they can do extremely well.
- Fresh every day. Shoppers will frequent the neighborhood butcher shops and bakeries in order to cook with the freshest ingredients possible.
- Chefs in schools. We’re finally cracking down on childhood obesity, instead of just talking about it, and feeding our children healthier foods. Chefs will work more closely with school districts to make sure lunch menus meet dietary needs.
- Discomfort foods. Americans are getting more adventurous and consciously trying new foods to expand their “food vocabulary.”
- Eating for sex and other things. Baby Boomers continue to influence every tenet of society, and food is no different. They’ll look for foods that help them stay young, strong and active.