From products with fewer sugars to more plant-based offerings, 2019 is shaping up to be another health-focused year for flavorists and product developers.
According to Kroger’s team of product developers, chefs and innovators, flavorists and product developers some of the popular trends for 2019 will include:
- Regional flavors. According to Kroger, regional flavors will be a top trend going into 2019. From Nashville-styled chicken to Southern Appalachian pimento cheese, product introductions with regional and global flavors will continue to gain ground.
- Plant-based products. According to a Mintel report, 31% of consumers participate in meat-free days at least once per week, such as "Meatless Monday" or "Flexitarian Friday." As more consumers question their meat consumption, plant and alternative proteins will continue to gain traction. This provides an opportunity for flavorists, as plant-based proteins require flavor masking to address off notes.
- Evolved eating styles. Similar to consumers opting for a day of not eating meat, many are embracing the lifestyle of vegetarian, flexitarian and other eating styles. According to a Mintel report, 15% of U.S. consumers identified as vegetarian or vegan. This should further grow the need for flavored plant-based products.
- Gut health. As consumers demand their products to do more for them, they are increasingly looking for products with functional benefits. Products with gut health claims are some of the most popular. Consumers are looking for products that are rich in probiotics and flavor.
- Sugar reduction. According to another Mintel report, 47% of consumers say that they are working to limit their sugar intake. Due to difficulties in creating sugar-reduced beverages and foods, added flavors are often required to the finished product.
Talking Trends at Flavorcon 2018
On Nov. 13-15, 2015, flavor and food trends will be a hotly discussed topic at Flavorcon 2018. Kicking off the conference, Rodolfo Estrada, director of culinary R&D and innovation for LATAM, will give a keynote presentation on the behind-the-scenes complexity of creating products that resonate with consumers. Shortly after this presentation, Ketan Shah, consulting senior flavorist for Esha Flavor Solutions, and Matthias Guentert, flavor consultant, will discuss flavor innovation and how key consumer trends impact flavor development. Additionally, Ilana Orlofsky, marketing manager for Imbibe, will discuss the most disruptive beverages you should know about, and Amy Marks-McGee will see what flavor trends are brewing in food today.