Climate-hero kelp, post-Arabica coffee, jollof rice and more will shape our food and drink experiences in 2022.
LONDON, November 10, 2021 – WGSN, the global authority on trend forecasting, today releases the six Food & Drink Top Trends for 2022. Informed by WGSN’s unique methodology, the trends reflect the consumer drivers that are shaping the food and beverage industries – with sustainability top of mind.
“Serious consumer concerns are driving the 2022 top trends, including global warming and sustainability impacts on our food supply, and an urgent need for more diversity, inclusivity and respect in the food world,” says Kara Nielsen, WGSN’s Director of Food & Drink and a long-time food trend authority. “Food makers and product developers need to address these issues while also realising how savvy eaters are about the benefits food ingredients like koji and prebiotics bring to the table.”
Our top food and drink trends for 2022 are:
- Climate-hero kelp – According to the WGSN Food & Drink social media influencer map, ‘kelp’ is the top ingredient associated with ‘regenerative agriculture.’ A fast-growing seaweed with versatile applications and an excellent nutritional profile, kelp is also a sustainability superfood that permanently removes carbon dioxide from the environment.
- Post-Arabica coffee – Arabica beans dominate the specialty coffee market, but the future is shaping up to be less reliant on the species – a fortuitous shift, as climate change threatens the bean consumer’s favour. Now, thanks to the cultivation of new wild and rediscovered heirloom species, coffee outside the Arabica norm will become more widely available.
- Jollof rice – Black entrepreneurs, chefs and restaurateurs are opening our eyes to the overlooked and erased influence of Black and African foodways on the global food system. In 2022, expect jollof rice, the flavour-packed West African staple to make its way around the world in new packaged goods including frozen meals, seasoning kits and grain sides.
- Baijiu breaks out – In 2022, Chinese baijiu is poised to become a universally available spirit to delight drinkers across the globe. Driving this trend are influencers of Chinese heritage excited to boost baijiu to the same international status as other regional spirits like tequila, as well as imbibers curious to experience a storied sip.
- Koji – Japan’s ‘national fungus’, will step into the spotlight in 2022 bringing delicious taste to a host of food and drink. The versatile ingredient has been favoured by global chefs for years; now it’s playing a starring role, appearing in plant-based meats and historic Japanese whisky. Koji brings forth the cravable fifth taste, umami, and will pop up in new places in 2022.
- Prebiotics popping – Functional prebiotic boosts are appearing in more styles of foods, and nowhere more so than in next-gen sodas, brimming with natural flavours, clean labels and a healthy dose of carbs to feed good bacteria in the gut. These soda pops presage a significant increase in prebiotic ingredients being added to all kinds of food, in part to support the immune system linked to a healthy gut.
NOTES TO EDITORS
Image: WGSN by Jessie Wong
For quotes and interviews with WGSN’s Food & Drink experts, contact: Alice Dundon (firstname.lastname@example.org / +44 (0)20 7715 6068)
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