Food trends to watch in 2022
Discover La Española team predictions for the world of food in 2022!
Blink and you’d have missed it! Yes, we’re quickly approaching the close of 2021 and that means readying ourselves for another year discovering fantastic foods.
In today’s blog post, we will be sharing a few of La Española team’s favoured trends, predictions and observations for the world of food in 2022.
Since the beginning of 2020, the UK, like the rest of the world, has seen significant change. Our relationships with the world around us, the people within it, and even the natural environment have all transformed dramatically - and the same can be said for our relationships with food.
In the same month that we saw Deliveroo register 3,000 additional restaurants, we also witnessed the panic buying of goods lead to empty shelves in supermarkets nationwide. So with a huge increase in the amount of meals cooked at home, and an increase in online food shopping and takeaway orders, a change in the way we buy, prepare, eat and view food seemed almost inevitable.
But, unlike the restrictions that played a large part in driving these transformations, our new ways of thinking, eating and drinking don’t look to be going away anytime soon.
So, what changed and how will that shape 2022?
Food for thought
The pandemic has helped more people recognise that wellbeing is a vital concern, and that healthy eating plays a large part in healthy thinking. The rising focus on mental and emotional health has skyrocketed in the last few years and shows no sign of slowing as we approach 2022. Mindfulness and meaningful purchasing have influenced the shopping experience and directly challenged the old ways of consumption.
Our prediction is that more of us will be looking for food and drink that supports mental and emotional wellbeing. From superfoods to organic to locally-sourced, 2022 will see a rise in the desire for foods that are good for our conscience, our constitution, and our communities. You could say that food is now, more than ever, becoming about the mind, body and soul.
Want to get on board sooner? Start by asking yourself how a product makes you feel when you eat it, and explore the emotional connection it provides.
Good enough is not enough
An increase in self-reflection and prioritisation has driven the standards in what we expect to see from brands, both big and small. This is true in terms of social and political issues, with producers held increasingly accountable for the ingredients they source, the packaging they use, etc. It is also true in terms of the price of quality, with many people leaning towards essentials and value-for-money purchases.
We predict that food and drink companies will be challenged to address new standards in quality, meaning and value. This isn’t necessarily a battle of the lowest costs, but more that individuals will only be willing to spend more on something that is right for them, aligning with their chosen way of life. Brands will need to work much harder to demonstrate that their products address our needs as consumers.
At La Española, this is a challenge we welcome with open arms. We have always placed great emphasis on sharing the values of our customers - from the leading quality of our premium olive oils to the sustainable means by which they are produced. When it comes to transparency, we even have a special tool dedicated to tracking your Extra Virgin Olive Oil bottle all the way back to its roots - to the very tree on which the olives were grown.
Explore Oliography today: www.oliography.co.uk
All together now
The pandemic was, literally and figuratively, an isolating experience for many of us. After extended periods cut off from family and friends, we were left with a deeper understanding of our need to connect with others, and the desire to be part of communities of like-minded individuals.
We foresee that this emphasis on connection and support will continue to be recognised widely, resulting in groups of like-minded people forming for bonding and friendship. Food and drink has always been a fantastic arena for bringing people together. We expect also to see an increase in dinner dates and dinner parties, picnics and food gifting - anything that involves bringing people together through a mutual appreciation of great food.
The sustainable table
One last observation we’d like to share is that of sustainable produce. Increasingly important to a growing number of people, the fight against climate change is manifesting more than ever in the increasingly-considered way we consume food and drink.
During the pandemic, it was reported that Tofoo doubled its monthly turnover to £1m, and that the newly-launched Applewood vegan cheese completely sold out in 40% of its UK launch stores. More recently, we have seen heightened exposure for so-called ‘climatarians' whose diets aim to leverage seasonal foods to reduce their carbon footprints, avoiding all products that exploit animals at risk of climate change.
Hardly an unexpected prediction given the growing support the various causes herald year on year, but this inching towards alternative environmentally-sensitive diets is something we expect to increase exponentially.
We need only look back ten years to see just how different the food landscape is today - where do you think it will be at the end of 2022? Or 2032?