Food and drink trends change over the years; whether it is a unique recipe, cultural or environmental awareness or trying to keep up with the latest smoothie recipe. This can be a challenge to keep up! Every time we step into a supermarket we need to ensure that we come out with everything on that ingredient list or else we will have to find a substitute product. Have you considered what should you be adding to your shopping list in 2018? Suttons, online gardening retailers and advocates of grow your own vegetables, investigates:
When socializing with friends, going to the club or enjoying a good meal; most of us enjoy drinking alcohol or a complimentary glass of wine. However, calorie counting does not go well with a taste of liquor as we become more health conscious day by day.
This implies the upcoming trend of 2018 will be healthy drinking. It allows us to drink and be sociable without consuming extra calories. The low-calorie option amongst alcoholic drinks has been a rising segment for many years and will continue to grow as we increasingly monitor what we eat and drink.
Low-calorie beer is also available for purchase and it is likely that low-calorie cocktails could be the next big thing. Now, 78% of bars offer cocktails which are up 12% on 2016 — driven by social media and people’s willingness to post photos of their fancy drinks. Zach Sasser, a head bartender, predicts that ingredients such as beetroot juice, kale and pureed carrots will become popular. “Going into this health-conscious age that we live in, I believe integration is inevitable,” he says.
There is also further potential for integrating healthy ingredients into cocktails. In one survey conducted by the National Restaurant Association, 700 chefs were surveyed on what they think the latest culinary trends may be. They said that the relationship between the bar and the kitchen is to become stronger. Can we expect vegetable-infused cocktails in 2018?
Rise in mushrooms
Research has revealed that fungi, such as mushrooms, are good for you as they produce ‘adaptogenic’ compound; it helps to assist in anti-stress and anti-cancer treatments. Therefore, we predict that mushrooms will be the next big thing in 2018. In fact, Food Navigator found that year-on-year sales of food products that include medicinal mushrooms have risen between an outstanding 200-800%, depending on the variety.
A consulting firm, Grand View Research, reported that the mushroom market is expected to exceed $50 billion (£37 million) over the next six years. Making its way into the food and drink sector through mushroom-infused coffees and mushroom smoothies, many cafes and retailers are already profiting from the trend.
The special ingredient is finding a place on the shelves of our supermarkets in other ways such as hair and skincare products! Different species of mushrooms are chosen for their varying properties — for example shiitake mushrooms are known for their richness in antioxidants and high vitamin D content, and the reishi mushroom is selected for its anti-inflammatory properties.
In recent years, we have seen a rise in the number of people turning vegetarian and vegan. In fact, the number of vegans in the UK has risen by 350% in the past decade. This is predominantly driven by the younger market, with half of them opting for this diet are between the ages of 15 and 34. While some people are enjoying the best of both worlds with a flexitarian diet; being primarily vegetarian with meat and fish occasionally.
Many people believe that there is little room for indulging or eating unhealthily on a vegan diet and we predict that this could all change. With so many people transforming to a ‘flexitarian’ diet, there is a new market for vegan fast food.
This may include seeing more of plant-based ‘meat’, such as the innovation that Leonardo DiCaprio has invested in called Beyond Meat. This could come in the form of burgers or fried food. Expect to see other indulgent food too, such as extravagant vegan desserts.
Possibly due to the rise of Instagram food lovers and chefs; healthy smoothies have been big in 2017. Finely ground tea leaves, matcha and powdered super vegetables such as kale, spirulina and spinach have been popular too; their texture making it easy to add to soups, smoothies and salads. Registered dietician, Abbey Sharpe, explains their popularity: “I think people love a quick way to get in their healthy-eating fix, and powdered substances are seen as an easy way to pack in the nutrition.”
This year we are expecting to see an increase of plant based proteins to support healthy diets and act as workout fuel. One of the newest forms of this is pea protein which has many benefits including its neutral taste; making it favorable for regular consumption.
With Brexit on the horizon and the uncertainty of trade regulations and costs; it is very likely that we will be embracing home grown produce this year. Brexit is already changing our views on food shopping. In April 2017; one in five said that they were more likely to buy British food after leaving the EU to support the economy. However, this was dependent on pricing, and if prices rise, many will go for cheaper alternatives.
We experienced rising fruit and vegetable costs in 2016; vegetable prices increased by 6.6% and this was a result of climate problems in Europe which led to shortages in some items. Can we risk facing these soaring prices again? Many think not. Instead, keen and amateur gardeners are heading to their backyards to plant their own vegetables and it’s expected that this trend will continue.