2012 Food Trends

Mobile Vendors
High streets cluttered with chains are meaning opportunities for street food, pop-ups and food trucks. Little capital, resources, or planning are required. Chefs have greater freedom to try out menu items, restaurant themes and are able to showcase brands in unusual locations including public areas, art galleries and festivals. With even the big names such as Wahaca (pictured), Wagamama and Jamies Italian joining in, look for a lot more through 2012.

Casual Dining
Great food and service are non-negotiable in a restaurant but with cash short, few people are prepared to shell out for swags and tails. There’ll be more small “front room” style eateries like London’s Roti Chai (pictured) and Duck Soup and New York’s Prune, with chairs crammed in, no tablecloths, sharing plates and plate licking de rigeur.

Packaging Innovations
As costs are being cut across the food & drink industry supply chain, packaging will become a focus for brand owners keen to improve margins from production to market. Reducing packaging weight/size, also known as lightweighting, is not only an environmentally-friendly move, but it can result in cost savings over the long term.

Healthy Food on the Go
As impulse sales are forecast to continue to rise in 2012 (albeit not into double figures), brands must work harder for their share of the grab and go market. Convenience will remain a priority, but health is also becoming an influential factor. People are looking for quick fixes for specific lifestyle issues such as fatigue and concentration. People are also looking to top up their vitamin, mineral, antioxidant and omega-3

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