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Food and drink trends for Asia’s consumers

Spicy red curry in a bowl
Emy / Unsplash
Jun 27, 2023 By WGSN Insider
Food & Drink

This month the WGSN regional team was on the ground covering THAIFEX - Anuga Asia 2023, Asia’s largest and most comprehensive food and drink trade show where Thai entrepreneurs, large businesses, SMEs and startups bring their products and services to domestic and international markets. 

WGSN-forecasted trends were on display at the event and included flavour fusions, functional food and new non-alcoholic drinks. See below for the products and trends that meet evolving Asian concerns around health, sustainability, convenience and flavour. 

Various Thai food dishes
RDNE Stock project / Pexels

Flavourful meat snacks

Snacking opportunities are bigger than ever as consumers seek comfort, health, convenience and status boosts. At the trade show, innovator brands offered indulgent savoury snacks inspired by culinary flavours with keto callouts. 

Málà, the numbing, spicy flavour profile derived from Sichuan peppercorns and chillies, was well spotted at the event. Forecasted in WGSN’s trend alert report in 2021, málà’s future applications are similar to sriracha, with the added benefit of its signature tingling sensation.

Spicy Thai food bowl
Málà’s future applications are similar to sriracha. Sirasit Gullasu / Unsplash

Protein in focus

The plant protein market in Asia Pacific is set to grow at a CAGR of 6.1% from 2022 to 2027 and as demand for high protein content rises, brands fortify everyday food and drink with innovative ingredients.

With snacks also growing in demand, we will see more products with pea, seed and nut proteins, which already lead the plant protein market.

Tofu and vegetables in a bowl
Consumer demand for high protein market keeps rising. Shri / Unsplash


For brands hoping to cater to Asian consumers in the food and drink market, the focus on new product development should shift towards health-forward formulations, sustainable practices and flavours that draw from regional foodways. Speak to our experts to know the trends impacting regional consumers in APAC and how your brand can prepare for upcoming demands. Request a demo here.

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