2022 Food Trend Forecast

By Heather Mayer

Styling and Photography by Laurie Mosco

Outside might be gray, but 2022’s food trend forecast is sunflower, floral, and citrus, with a chance of teatime.  We combed through this year’s predictions and identified the top food trends you need to follow now.

Soak up the Sun(flower) Seeds and Sustainability

food trends, sunflower seeds, sunflower seed butter, seed crackers, Mary's Gone Crackers, Once Again Sunflower Butter, Maple Valley Farms

For 2022, sustainability will be the driving force in consumers’ purchasing behavior, according to Market Intelligence company, Innova Market Insights, (Food & Beverage Insider). Whole Foods takes this prediction one step further, identifying grains that promote soil health as a big draw (Food Business News). One of the most popular grains that promotes soil health – sunflowers seeds.  

There’s no “butter” way to embrace the sunflower front than with sunflower seed butter like Once Again Creamy Sunflower Seed Butter.  Made in small batches for a creamy texture and rich flavor, Once Again is a wholesome nut-free, plant-based protein that will power them throughout the day while supporting the planet. Snacks are a great entryway into any new trend, so consider Once Again Organic Sunflower Seed Butter Graham Cracker Sandwiches, for your snack selection. The creamy sunflower seed butter sandwiched between gluten free graham crackers is a better-for-you remake of the classic snack that we predict will be a quick favorite.

Sunflower seeds are also irresistibly crunchy, and add a terrific snap as part of gluten-free crackers like Mary’s Gone Crackers Super Seed Crackers. Fancy butters and crackers are only one way to add a little sunflower to your selection. Promote the sunflower trend by offering sunflower seeds straight up in portable acetate containers like Maple Valley Farms Roasted and Salted Sunflower Seeds for simple snacking while on the go.

Hibiscus & Citrus Flourish 

food trends, hibiscus, citrus, Teekane Tea, Torrie & Howard Chewie Fruties, Bonne Maman Tea, Subtle Tea

Two flavor fronts really picking up speed — Hibiscus, according to Whole Foods, and exotic citrus, according to Food Navigator .  Hibiscus flavor is included in many more foods than you might think, and it’s not always immediately obvious from the product name. Be prepared to alert customers to the trending flavor through signage. 

The tangy, sweet taste of exotic hibiscus tees itself up nicely to tea blends.  It can balance off the sweet raspberry taste in the iced variety like Subtle Tea Raspberry. The deep red color and bite it adds to traditional Teekanne Rosehip & Hibiscus Tea creates a fun sipping experience.

Another reason hibiscus and citrus are hot at the moment is because of the vitamin C they can provide. Foods containing these ingredients that tout their vitamin C content like Bonne Maman Vitality Herbal Tea and Torrie & Howard Blood Orange Honey Chewie Fruties are sure to have the sales accumulating.

Afternoon Tea is The New Happy Hour

food trends, tea time, tea time happy hour, PG Tips, Anna's Swedish Thins, Belvoir Farms lemonade, Fentimans lemonade, Dare Whippet, Stash Tea,

The mocktail continues to track, according to Whole Foods (Parade), with Food & Wine and Pinterest, forecasting that high tea will take over as the new happy hour. Make it rain endless happy hour possabili-TEAs with a large selection of high tea items.

Pinterest also reported a search surge for “drinking tea pose.”  Help them get those pinkies up high with authentic British tea classics and premium teas with a twist. We like British favorite, PG Tips Black Tea, made the same way since 1869 with premium ingredients and bold flavors.  Their pyramid tea bag isn’t just Pinterest-worthy, it actually emulates a tea pot, offering a bolder, more authentic flavor than traditional tea bags.  For a departure from the traditional, there’s Stash’s Breakfast in Paris Black Tea, a blend of black tea, lavender and bergamot, or Stash’s Asian Pear Harmony Green Tea, featuring the bright flavor of Asian Pear.

A second search surge is “tea party aesthetic,” so make teatime picture perfect with premium cookies from around the globe. Combine two trends; high tea and citrus flavor in one, with Sweden’s crispy Anna’s Orange Thins.  Offer extra tea time indulgence with Germany’s Bahlsen Leibniz Milk Chocolate Biscuit, an elegant scalloped crispy biscuit topped with a square of rich and creamy milk chocolate.  To round out your offerings, present customers with the delightful domes of rich chocolate encasing fluffy marshmallows and soft cookies, and sweet bright raspberry centers with Quebec’s Dare Raspberry Whippet Cookies.   

With mocktails trending, some might want to celebrate high tea happy hour with beverages that are social media worthy, but not necessarily tea, such as pretty in pink Fentimans Rose Lemonade. For more of a unique blend, offer the bright floral flavors of Belvoir Farm Elderflower or Elderflower and Rose Lemonade.  Merchandise your mocktail and tea ingredients in a high traffic area, preferably with smart signage, and watch customers respond with smiles and sales.

No need to track the trends.  We have them all right here

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