2022 Top Food Trends

Originally Published: January 20, 2022
Last Updated: April 11, 2022
2023 Top Food Trends

Global Food Forums’ 2022 Clean Label Conference,  (May 24-25) will offer on-trend information for food product developers and others involved with the food and beverage industries. Click the link above for more conference details including speakers, technical presentations, location, cost and other relevant information.

Global Food Forums and its related websites (Clean LabelProtein Trends & Technologies and Sweetener Systems) again provide an annual list of “top food trends lists” with a 2022 Top Food Trends addition. Here we offer a look at various predictions for 2022 and beyond. Click on each headline below for more detailed information from the list source. MORE TO COME!

See 2022 trends predictions below from: Innova Market Insights, International Food Information Council IFIC, Euromonitor International, Mintel, S2G Ventures, WGSN, Unitec, The Food People, Future Food
Also see other Top Food Trends Lists

Innova Market Insights Top 10 Trends for 2022

  1. Shared Planet – Brands are moving from simply proclaiming their credentials to meeting a clear, agreed and understandable measurement of their environmental and social impact.
  2. Plant-Based: The Canvas for Innovation – Plant-based R&D has refocused from mimicking meat, fish and dairy to optimizing options that stand on their own merits.
  3. Tech to Table – While innovators embrace new production methods, consumers turn to apps and AI for guidance on personalized nutrition and a greater understanding of how to meet their needs.
  4. Shifting Occasions – Lockdowns and the pandemic have reshaped existing eating occasions while at the same time helping to create new ones.
  5. Voice of the Consumer – Consumers are calling the shots and expecting more engagement from brands through digital and real-world channels that align with their political, social and ethical values.
  6. Gut Glory – Consumers believe gut health is key to achieving holistic well-being. Prebiotic ingredients are on the rise alongside classic probiotics.
  7. Back to the Roots – Shortening supply chains have inadvertently underscored the value of functionality, freshness and the authenticity of local food.
  8. Amplified Experiences – Consumers are hungry for new experiences around their food, seeking out more adventurous choices.
  9. Upcycling Redefined – Upcycling is the new “recycling,” seeking to curb food waste and loss. The Upcycled Food Association rolled out the “world’s first mark certifying upcycled food.”
  10. My Food, My Brand – Among younger generations, food is now a reflection of lifestyle and personal values. 

International Food Information Council (IFIC) - Wellness, Nostalgia, Innovation and New Views of Sustainability Are Among the Food Trends for 2022

  1. Well, Well, Well…ness – Consumers are looking for more healthful nutritional attributes in their diet including fiber and whole grains to boost their immune system and; better ways to manage stress with micro- and macronutrients as well as other functional ingredients.
  2. Yearning for Yesteryear – The familiar and nostalgic will guide food choices. “Simple, no fuss, home cooking,” will continue to ride the tide of the pandemic.
  3. Fever for the Flavor – Restricted travel leaves consumers wanting to explore with exoctic foods and flavors such as hibiscus, yuzu, turmeric, kelp, gochujang and ube. Consumers will continue to familiarize themselves with umami—the “fifth taste,” as they become more acquainted with kokumi, considered by some to be a “sixth taste.” Salt and sugar substitute consumption is expected to increase as consumers become more health focused.
  4. Necessity Is the Mother of (Pandemic) Invention – As a result of the pandemic, businesses have adopted “ghost kitchens” and pop-ups; QR codes for menus and self-service kiosks at restaurants; and E-commerce and direct-to-consumer sales. Of increasing interest in 2022 are urban farming and “vertical agriculture” for city-dwellers. CRISPR will assert itself as a leading next-generation biotechnology in crop production to help address food security, climate change and sustainability.
  5. Sustainability “Cemented In” – “The 2021 Food and Health Survey found that 42% of consumers believe their food choices have a moderate or significant impact on the environment, while 7 in 10 say climate change sometimes influences their purchase decisions.” Environmental sustainability as a consumer value will help fuel new eating patterns like “reducetarian,” “climatarian” and low-carbon.

Euromonitor International’s Top 10 Global Consumer Trends 2022

Although Euromonitor’s Top 10 Global Consumer Trends covers far more than the food industry, each of the following trends has the potential to impact food choices.

  1.  Backup Planners – Supply chain disruptions lead to next best options: Faced with challenges in securing their usual or desired products and services, Backup Planners are looking for ways to purchase similar items or finding creative solutions to obtain alternatives.
  2. Climate Changers – A low-carbon world: Green activism and low-carbon lifestyles are here to stay. Consumers expect brands to step up and are taking action through the products they purchase as concerns over the climate emergency escalate.
  3. Digital Seniors – From resistance to reliance: Older consumers were forced online as the world shut down. Now, familiar and comfortable with technology, Digital Seniors are empowered to make purchases and use services through this channel.
  4. Financial Aficionados – Democratized money management: Consumers are gaining confidence in investing and becoming savvy savers to strengthen financial security. Financial Aficionados take control of their money and use services to track their transactions.
  5. The Great Life Refresh – Passion and purpose drive action: The pandemic triggered consumers to make The Great Life Refresh, resulting in drastic personal changes and a collective reboot of values, lifestyles and goals.
  6. The Metaverse Movement – Simulated, 3D digital ecosystems of the future: The digital world is evolving beyond virtual hangouts to immersive 3D realities. Consumers are embracing these digital spaces to socialize with communities.
  7. Pursuit Of Preloved – Secondhand, recommerce and peer-to-peer marketplaces: Thrifting is trending. Consumers are moving from an owning to an experiencing mindset. Sustainability and individuality are removing the stigma associated with secondhand shopping and driving peer-to-peer commerce.
  8. Rural Urbanites – Best of both worlds: Suburban and rural communities offer more spacious housing and greener scenery, luring consumers out of the metropolitan area. City dwellers also want these benefits brought into their neighborhoods.
  9. Self-Love Seekers – Individuality and authenticity drive happiness: Acceptance, self-care and inclusion are at the forefront of consumer lifestyles. Self-Love Seekers prioritize their happiness, feeling comfortable in their own skin and indulging in goods and services that elevate their sense of self.
  10. The Socialization Paradox – A divided return to pre-pandemic life: Consumers are approaching a return to pre-pandemic life in different ways based on their comfort levels. Certain consumers are eager, whilst others are hesitant, to resume their normal activities, creating The Socialization Paradox.


  1. In Control – In times of uncertainty, consumers crave a sense of agency over their lives. Food, drink and foodservice brands will need to be more transparent and give consumers the information they need to feel educated and empowered to confidently make choices for themselves and their families.
  2. Enjoyment Everywhere – Having endured lockdowns, consumers are eager to break out of their confines and explore, play and embrace novel experiences. Consumers will be seeking joyful products that amplify the flavors, colors, textures, aromas and interactivity of food, drink and foodservice.
  3. Flexible Spaces – Retailers, restaurants and brands can create multifunctional and meaningful spaces where consumers can connect, shop and eat in-person or online. Companies will creatively use food, drink and foodservice venues as forums where consumers can spend time, express themselves and meet new people.

S2G Ventures Reveals 10 Trends Shaping the Future of Food & AgTech in 2022

In response to changing consumer preferences, climate change and shifts in the capital market landscape, S2G Ventures predicts that we are entering a global food transition, much like the global energy transition that has been a multi-decade effort of over $4 trillion of capital formation.

According to Sanjeev Krishnan, S2G Ventures Managing Director and Chief Investment Officer, “The food transition is still in its infancy but is being propelled by seismic tailwinds: massive demographic change spurring new consumer demand, significant advancements in the biology, chemistry and physics of food production to create new choices and now capital markets.

The 4th Industrial Revolution Comes to the Farm

  1. Robots will increase efficiency while reducing labor needs across the food system.
  2. The rise of ESG (Environmental, Social & Governance) will help to digitize the farm.
  3. Fintech will transform opportunities in agriculture, just as it did for the student loan and mortgage markets.
  4. RNA technology that saved lives during Covid-19 will be applied to farms to save soils.

Supply Chain Disruption Accelerates Innovation

  1. Fermentation will power the next generation of alternative protein products.
  2. Cellular protein will provide consumers around the world with safe, sustainable food.
  3. Adoption of food waste solutions will be recognized as both a good business practice and an essential tool for feeding the world.

Consumers Demand Better Food Choices and Experiences

  1. Al and machine learning platforms will unlock greater understanding of and use cases for plants and fungi.
  2. Food will become central to the effort to prevent chronic disease and improve health outcomes.
  3. Food brands and grocers will have to “personalize or perish.”

WGSN Food & Drink confirms the Top Trends for 2022 and Beyond

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.”

  • 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.

Education Blog | UNITEC today - 9 food trends to end 2021 and start 2022

Education Blog | UNITEC Technological University of Mexico UNITEC today (Originally published in Spanish)

By: Ceyli Diane Ramirez Hernandez

The last few years were complicated for the food industry, for which it was forced to evolve, reinvent and adapt the way we knew gastronomy, leading to a more demanding and environmentally conscious demand.

Food People LTD published at its VII Annual Convention its “International Guide to Food and Beverage Trends 2021-2022”, so below we share what they will be:

  1. Realfooding –  is a movement that promotes the consumption of healthy food, where there is no place for processed food, improving the health of the population thanks to food.
  2. Products with storytelling – its objective is to promote the origin of the product, nowadays consumers can be more informed about the products they consume, their origin and the processes during their production, they not only focus on selling a food, they also inform about the company and the people who work in it, so the consumer perceives a human team more than a brand.
  3. Promote vegetable fats – the belief that fat is bad became popular a few years ago; however, nutritionists showed that this is not true, since thanks to the use of fats of vegetable origin such as olive oil, coconut oil or oils that originate from nuts, it is very popular, since they are healthy and balanced, they are also a source of energy for active and sporty people. Today there is a great variety for the taste of each person such as avocado, olives or nuts.
  4. Healthy Snacks – the food industry is betting on healthy alternatives, such as vegetable creams or guacamole for “dipping,” and hummus, nuts, seeds, vegetables or dehydrated tubers.
  5. Savings rule –  consumers and businesses are becoming environmentally conscious. Reduce and reuse is its new motto, taking advantage of surpluses to create new products, likewise consumers are cooking with leftovers from the previous day for breakfast and growing their own products.
  6. Gastronomy at home –  the pandemic accelerated a trend that was already on the rise, this due to the need for demand, companies have resorted to supply chains such as dark kitchens and cloud distribution to adapt their strategy to their model of business. This trend encourages collaborations to offer consumers all kinds of products, such as meal kits.
  7. The microbiota for gastrointestinal health – is of interest to consumers, since they are aware of their health and the importance that food plays in achieving it, (via) products such as kimchi and kombucha that are gaining more popularity every day. It is shown that 70% of immune cells are in the intestine and serotonin, which is the hormone of happiness, is produced there.
  8. Frozen food sector – have experienced many innovations thanks to the pandemic. Consumers have been allowed to expand their pantries, this trend adds opportunities for buyers to be connected, informed and make positive and sustainable decisions. Today you can get dishes from your favorite restaurant delivered to your home ready to finish in the oven.
  9. Organic farming companies – are beginning to bet on this trend that cares for biodiversity, and consumers are also already choosing to consume plant-based foods. Similarly, there is interest in using seasonal products and new cooking methods such as confit, charring and fermentation.

These trends are committed to the well-being of people, as well as the environment, so every day we see that supply and demand are more aware of the impact we are leaving on our planet.

The Food People™ - T op 10 New and Rising Trends 2021 – 2022

In the ever-changing landscape of food and drink, it can be a dizzying experience to keep an eye upon all the latest developments, which is why we have helped you to zone in one the most exciting with our Top 10 New and Rising Trends of 2021 – 2022.

  1. Mini Splurge – As they feel the pinch and cut back on big blowouts, consumers look for little ways to upgrade everyday rituals – e.g., plain black coffee gets upgraded to iced coffee with salted caramel foam, toast swaps out for bake-from-frozen chocolate croissants, or Friday night’s steak dinner is padded out with bone marrow gravy and truffle fries.
  2. Comfort – Comfort rules when it comes to cooking…and eating! The obsession with baking continues unabated, dovetailing with this year’s ‘carb comeback’; gourmet sandwiches, lasagna, noodles and pizza are embraced by both home cooks and professional chefs. There’s a need to be cozy and comfortable; think slippers and cardigans, slow cooked dinners and fresh baked cookies.
  3. Thrift Rules – Consumers and businesses are getting thrifty, for both cost and environmental reasons. Throwaway culture is rejected in favor of ‘upcycling’ surplus food into new products. ‘Make do and mend’ and ‘sharing economy’ approaches are being adopted. Consumers are also rediscovering their pantries and making strides in reducing food waste at home–from growing their own veg to reviving last night’s leftovers for breakfast.
  4. Home Delivery – The home delivery revolution has been accelerated by the pandemic. In the restaurant sphere, businesses are turning to ghost kitchens and ‘delivery only’ concepts. But Friday night takeout is just the tip of the iceberg; consumers expect anything and everything to be delivered to their door (and fast!)–groceries, meal kits, cocktails, breakfast, lunch, snacks… the list goes on.
  5. Fired Up – Cooks are getting ever more creative in the fire cooking sphere–from experimenting with types of wood and smoke (olive, chestnut, hickory, maple, oak and more) to layering ‘fire flavors’ over each other (think charred steak with blistered tomatoes and smoked hollandaise); and embracing global grill techniques (e.g., Japanese, Korean and Thai BBQ) to fire cooking desserts.
  6. Power of the Gut – Gut health has been a hot topic for some time, but we are just beginning to understand the impact our gut has on the rest of the body – in particular, immune function and brain health. Indeed, around 70% of the body’s immune cells and 90% of serotonin (the happy chemical) are found in your gut. The gut may just hold the key to holistic wellbeing.
  7. Alfresco Cooking & Dining – We appreciate the great outdoors more than ever. For consumers, that means lots of barbecues, picnics and garden parties. Restaurants, too, have embraced al fresco dining, with all manner of terrace, street and curbside dining options. And, of course, that means lots of outdoor cooking–in particular fire cooking, from low ‘n’ slow smokers to pizza ovens and fire pits.
  8. Frozen – The frozen sector is undergoing a foodie revolution, as consumers of all ages are won over by its taste, health and budget credentials. Sustainable seafood, exotic fruit and veg year-round, sushi and sandwiches, heat-and-eat goodies – the aisle is a veritable treasure trove. And, with more consumers forward planning family meals and batch cooking, freezers at home are no longer just for vodka and ice cream.
  9. Headspace – Consumers are looking for practical ways to aid sleep, reduce their anxiety and help them on the journey to good mental health. Solutions range from yoga and meditation to CBD and adaptogens (ingredients like magnesium, zinc, maca, reishi and cordyceps that purport to improve the body’s natural resistance to stress) and more.
  10. Love your Veg – As plant-based eating moves ever more mainstream, consumer attitudes towards vegan products is evolving. Though demand for plant-based alternatives that are ‘just like meat’ continues, there is now a counterbalance, with some consumers seeking out dishes that champion veg front and center (rather than mimic meat) – and products with short, identifiable and ‘natural’ ingredients lists.


futurefood.com - The Trends to Watch in 2022 and Beyond

Future Food Global
Australia’s Global Food & Hospitality Consultants

There have been evident changes in consumer preferences relating to safety, supporting local, food choices, service expectations and the utilisation of technology, that throughout the pandemic has led to many businesses fast-tracking innovative strategies in operations, new product development, marketing, and analysis, forming new trends in the industry.

The core categories that we see being influential 2022 and beyond are not necessarily new to the industry, however the amount of focus they receive will be game changing:

TECHNOLOGY- The Food & Hospitality industry has traditionally been slow to adopt technology solutions, but the COVID-19 pandemic has notably hastened that and forced food and beverage businesses to look beyond the conventional. We have seen the necessity for many to adapt or die in a fast-changing landscape and this could just be the beginning of how tech will shape the future of the industry.

  • Online ordering, self-checkouts, touchless payments, food delivery and pick-up
  • Robots in food preparation, service and delivery, prompting enhanced labor and operational efficiencies.
  • Reduced in-store transactions will continue to drive t… delivery of food and beverages from low cost ‘fulfilment’ centers.

REPURPOSING – It has been inspiring to see the commitment of modern food and hospitality operators in minimizing their impact on the environment, through the reduction in food and equipment waste across the sector.

It has also been refreshing to see a push from large companies introducing policies that mandate their future food and hospitality related projects to… use and repurpose the raw materials and reduce cost.

MODERN MENUS – The humble menu has had a thorough overhaul in the past two years … (T)he emphasis that has been placed on menu flexibility, pricing, structure, and menu size.

Menu pricing structure has progressed to provide greater value to customers, as expectations change in the true meaning of ‘value for money’

Menus and food designed to travel. The uprise in delivery has manifestly changed chef’s thinking and influenced menu development. Dishes that can travel, that don’t spoil in their packaging and are highly presentable after their journey are prized by the modern restaurant and customer alike.

Shorter, more defined menus that are less labor intensive, more cost effective and contain more sustainable and locally sourced produce are becoming a clear focus of the modern menu.

FOOD FOCUS – Healthy choices, food that nourishes and plant-based diets for our overall health and the health of the planet will continue to rise.

The price of meat (especially beef) is swaying consumer decisions and proving an evident correlation between this and plant-based consumption.

The cost of meat, as in the environmental impact and physical cost of production is influencing customers and changing long standing consumption habits.

The choice to reduce meat consumption or ‘Reducetarianism’ is becoming a significant trend that is shaping restaurants and menus across the world….

Fresh, local, sustainable, ethical and seasonal will continue to be in fashion and shape most good menus we peruse.

SUSTAINABILITY – Climate change, zero emissions and waste reduction are all key environmental considerations that are trending across all media platforms and effect all industries; however, the food and hospitality industry is a prime contributor to all of these.

Reduction in the reliance on gas as the primary cooking fuel will see many food businesses change their preferences and shift towards more environmentally sustainable cooking systems.

Compostable and Biodegradable packaging has been and remains to be one of the most highly recommended environmental solutions in the food sector and welcomed by many food retailers, however an ultimate push towards a reduction in disposables, full stop, may be the stimulus for greater uptake in reusables and returnables.

Waste reduction across all waste streams will become a greater focus as recycling rules change and operators are forcing suppliers to rethink their product distribution methods. Zero plastics, reusable crates, naked packaging and alternative collection methods will become more prominent as the industry as a whole aims to reduce its footprint.

Continued hyper-localization of supply chain – buying local from smaller producers, in the face of continued international supply chain disruption.

COMMERCIAL CONTRACTS/TERMS – Opening new businesses and dictating terms of contractual matters has shifted in favor of the tenant and is changing the landscape as to how we negotiate terms…

LIFESTYLE CENTRES – The uptake of online shopping, whilst prevalent pre-covid, has boomed over the past 2 years, across both general retail and food and the shopping center landscape is transforming in front of our eyes. ‘Experience-Led’, not ‘Product-Led’ centers are rapidly emerging as customers demand different experiences and new lifestyle center interactions…

Food is the future and the stimulus of our future local shopping/lifestyle centers. It will be the catalyst for change and the answer to the challenges many landlords are facing.

CONVENIENCE – The growth of convenience is being driven by consumer expectation and the amenity that delivery apps and new food businesses have supplied to the industry. The competition for the customers dollar is fierce and food operators are being forced into proactive thinking and new convenient solutions to win (what) the customers spend.

Home delivery meal boxes – bringing restaurant quality meals to your home is now a regular occurrence for many and will continue to shape the dining landscape as we know it.