Trend Watch reveals this season’s top trends

20 February 2023, 07:46 AM
  • Keep the following crazes in mind when you refresh your stock and displays this year, and you’ll be bang on trend
Trend Watch reveals this season’s top trends

1 Posh Pizza
The British appetite for pizza has grown more than 2,300% over the last decade (Just Eat). As quality expectations rise, so opportunity knocks for fine food retailers.

In the cost-of-living crisis, Liam Spivey, general manager at Chatsworth Farm Shop, reports many Chatsworth customers are cutting back – eating out less but treating themselves to special meals at home. So, they’re introducing a ready-prepared sourdough pizza at £7 – alongside their standard £5 pizza.

As long as anxiety is on the increase, we’ll need comfort food. Pizza made up 19% of all takeaway orders on the Just Eat app in 2020. That said, a spokesman for PAPA told us that wheat prices and availability are major concerns for the pizza industry. Food prices are soaring. A posh pizza with a sublime topping and well-made base has become fine food. Rise to the challenge.

Find out how to cash in on the posh pizza trend here.

2 Venison’s in vogue
There are plenty of meaty reasons for putting venison on fine food retail shelves this year.

In the year to April 2022, the total annual spend within the venison market was £15.2m (Kantar), an increase of 20.3% compared with April 2019. What’s more, there are signs of a slight dip in sales of plant-based meats (Mintel) and growing numbers, including former vegans, looking for a sustainable red meat they can justify eating now and then.

Farmed deer is controversial but there is also sufficient home-grown wild venison to eat it year-round. Whatever the source, most people would rather someone else did the prep, and that’s where you come in.

Discover what’s driving the trend here.

3 Appetite for apples
It’s as easy as apple pie to revitalise your shelves as we enter 2023. In fact, the humble British fruit might actually help to boost sales.

Apples were the inspiration behind many new food and drink launches in 2022 (consumer trend forecaster, WGSN) and that’s been the case for two years now. Think Starbucks Crisp Apple Macchiato, Captain Morgan Sliced Apple Rum and Bailey’s Apple Pie Liqueur.

While chains such as Wetherspoon’s fly the flag with British Bramley Apple Pie on their dessert menu, chefs give retro puddings a modern twist, viz Ottolenghi’s Miso Apple Charlotte.

Going forward, consumers have plenty to feel anxious about and the familiarity of seasonal ingredients is soothing. Apples represent both simplicity and versatility; time-honoured recipes can be refreshed with such voguish flavours as Lotus Biscoff, maple bacon, jalapeno chilli and blood orange.

Find out how to use apples to your advantage here.

4 Barista-grade hot chocolate
Drinking chocolate is following in coffee’s footsteps, and the future is craft and bespoke. Hotel Chocolat, Chococo and Knoops are just three businesses with cafés where consumers can explore the delights of liquid chocolate, and independent retailers are well-placed to cash in too.

Lockdown accelerated the discovery of hot chocolate. Deprived of cafés, consumers bought hot drinks equipment and drinking chocolate subscriptions. Online retailers abound; they range from well-known names like Whittard to more recent arrivals – Hotties, Love Cocoa and Calm Cocoa.

If indies and coffee houses push product differentiation, they can certainly cash in. They must educate consumers about eco credentials, taste, origins and cocoa solids percentages, while offering them variants such as salted caramel, mocha and mint chocolate to make ordering fun. Not by accident does Knoops have counters inside Harrods and Selfridges, where chocolate baristas help customers design their ideal fix. One day, chocolate could have more options than coffee.

Discover what’s in the hot chocolate trend here.

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