2023 Kerry Flavour Report - © 2023 Kerry

Sunday Musings: Flavour Specialist Kerry Predicts…

Kerry is a global company which produces food flavouring products and issues trend reports anxiously awaited by players in all industry niches… Kerry has released its 2023 report – and, for the first time, it agrees with me – at least on some things!

Cheddar Cheese and Caramel - © 2023 - CretorsCheddar Cheese and Caramel: It’s already a thing,
and it already has a name – Chicago Mix.

‘Legacy’ is the word

The flavour keyword, at least for the Canadian market, this year is ‘legacy’. Legacy recipes, legacy flavours, legacy ingredients.

According to a release, Kerry’s annual Taste and Nutrition Charts, “provide an in-depth analysis of flavours, ingredients and nutrition trends shaping innovation in the coming year. Taste remains the top driver when it comes to food and beverage choices. And in the coming year, consumers will be motivated by simplicity, sustainability and meeting their nutrition goals. Nonetheless, there will be a rise in unconventional flavour pairings and trends driven by lost traditions, simplicity and comfort.”

What ‘Legacy’ is going to mean re.- food

“There will be a resurgence in age-old cooking practices and traditional recipes as consumers place more importance on tradition and provenance. Globally, ingredients such as ashwagandha, mushrooms and algae are finding a new home across snack and beverage applications.”

“Indulgence will take on a new meaning, with younger consumers in particular, seeking mashups of familiar food and drinks that they grow up combined with emerging new flavour tonalities. This trend is augmented by the influence of social media channels such as TikTok and Instagram.” And, as we all know, Tik Tok and Instragram can be pretty far out in their content and suggestions…

“Across regions, there will be a hunger for unconventional combinations of traditional ingredients and emerging taste profiles from other regions, such as Wasabi and jalapeno, and a thirst for healthier beverages with functional ingredients such as ashwagandha. […] Consumers will be seeking value in 2023 as inflation hits home, but they will still gravitate toward products that allow permissible indulgence, still seeking simple flavours like cheddar cheese and caramel across nostalgic favourites like cookies and salty snacks.”

A wide range of flavours in play

The Kerry Taste Charts reveal a vast range of flavours engaged in an intricate global interplay of relationships, pushed a pulled by the internet, easy air travel to and from anywhere, and the most-educated consumer base ever.

“Flavours have a powerful way to convey a story, particularly when it comes to consumer trends and preferences.,” Soumya Nair, global consumer research and insights director at Kerry, says. “This year, […] comfort still reigns supreme with peppermints, hazelnuts, chocolates, cheeses, and chilies still dominating tastebuds. [But] whether [we’re talking] a nostalgic treat, a comfort dish, or a healthy alternative, consumers expect a greater variety of tastes in 2023.”

“Through our in-depth research and insights from our teams across the globe, we are seeing how trends are travelling the world – with Asian flavours such as Korean Barbecue, Yuzu, Japanese Miso, Gooseberry and Hawthorn, reaching Europe and North America, while popular dishes in Europe such as Moroccan Tahini and Italian Bolognaise inspire innovation in Asia Pacific. Consumers are travelling the world through taste and we expect that interest [in]and desire [for] authenticity to continue.”

My take

I was gratified to see terms such as indulgence, simplicity, sustainability, nutrition goals, and comfort sneaking over to the Kerry report from my current socio-culinary glossary.

I am always intrigued by what the self-appointed experts have to say about trends and whirlwind fads in the food sector. But this is the first time I and my views have been so strongly supported by the majority of them. They and I usually end up in an adversarial relationship. So… I’ll be further intrigued to see where the remainder of 2023 takes us all…

Where is it taking you?

Muse on that…

~ Maggie J