The local food movement is going to become even more local, says Datassential, a food industry research company in the United States.
“The focus is on connecting with consumers through truly local foods, driven by small metro areas,” says the company.
“ In fact, small geographical distances can have a huge impact on what consumers see and want.”
Ethnic foods will be important, but not billed as ethnic. People of different ethnic groups will simply choose to dine on familiar foods.
“This generation is more likely to prefer cuisines like Korean or Vietnamese to “American” or Southern. They don’t go out to eat for cuisines like “Mexican” or “Japanese,” they simply go out for tacos and ramen,” the company says.
Foodservice items will be moving into homes.
“Consumers are using technology to bring the best parts of eating out into the home, with a wealth of new on-demand delivery services and meal kit startups.
‘Investors are taking notice; it’s estimated that over a billion dollars will be invested in the space this year, up from $600 million in 2014.’
Almost no dish or ingredient is safe; chefs and manufacturers are on the lookout for alternatives to almost everything.
Even foundational ingredients such as flour, milk or peanut butter are making way for alternative flours (chickpea, spelt, buckwheat), milks (almond, hemp, rice) and nut butters (cashew, pistachio).
“Smoked” dishes are being left on the fire for a bit longer and transformed into “burnt” and “charred.” Use of the terms have grown from two percent of menus a decade ago to seven percent today, and the technique can be applied to just about anything, from tomatoes to proteins to cocktail ingredients.
“Almost anything can be transformed into a savory version of itself, from savory oatmeals on the breakfast menu, which swap out maple syrup and brown sugar for sriracha and a poached egg, to savory yogurts and ice creams showing up everywhere from retail to fine dining.
“The United Nations has declared 2016 the International Year of Pulses, bringing awareness to these crops harvested for dry grain — lentils, beans, chickpeas, etc. Pulses are perceived as truly functional foods, not just because of their protein and amino acid content, but also because of their positive impact on the environment.
“Food halls” which combine foodservice and retail in a single location are ‘under development across the country while on-site segments (hospitals, colleges and universities) and retailers are taking inspiration from food hall designs.”
The researchers also say that restaurants and bars will combine several sections, or themes, under one roof, such as a wine bar, a sushi bar and a Rathskeller.