In early October, Prepared Foods held its 37th annual New Products Conference, where themes of sustainability underpinned many of the speaker presentations. New Products Conference sessions surrounding upcycled foods, food waste and plant based foods each contained overt and tangential messages about corporate responsibility and sustainable food production.
Product packaging that remains after use is a burden. It’s a burden to consumers, to communities and to the environment. My sense is that products positioned with sustainable packaging messages are going to dominate categories and eventually set a baseline for market entry.
As part of its Walmart Reimagined campaign, the retailer is aiming to boost store traffic by converting excess parking space to experimental communities comprised of food halls, recreation areas and even mobile healthcare units.
A big part of this best-use-of-resources movement is prominently expressed in the plant-based revolution. Plant-based meat and dairy analogs have been hitting shelves as fast as ingredient technology can make them happen, with expert mimicry of their animal-derived counterparts the “brass ring.”
With each cycle of these shows, we’re privileged to encounter the vanguard of the trends in food, ingredients, and food tech. You could look at those as sort of the breadcrumbs along the path of where we’re heading in “Food World.” But sometimes, everything converges so that you also get a look at the substance of the path itself.
Last year, the focus was on teens. This year, our inestimable experts, Dr. Keith-Thomas Ayoob (clinical professor emeritus of the Department of Pediatrics at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine, NYC) and Jill Litwin (founder and CEO of Peas of Mind LLC, award-winning makers of foods for little ones) swing their attention to the other side of the playground and take a look at babies and infants, the 0-2 age group, in "Building Better Babies."
Some game-changing things are about to happen. Sugar labeling is likely imminent, and who knows what other label laws or regulatory changes might land on processors’ heads.
January 5, 2018
Welcome to 2018. I don’t know about you, but I’m looking forward to this shiny new year. We closed 2017 with a whole-issue peek into our crystal ball, hopefully helping processors get a jump on the food, beverage, and ingredient trends for the next 365 days and beyond.