Grass-fed milk chocolate and peppery Cambodian sauces hint at some of the trends on display at the Winter Fancy Food Show, which opens today at Moscone Center in San Francisco. Throughout the show, which runs through Tuesday, January 21, the SFA Trendspotter Panel of buyers, chefs, food writers, educators, and other industry professionals will report daily on their official selections for trends from the Winter Show.
Here are some initial trends and innovations expected to emerge, with a few examples of each. More examples can be found throughout the show floor.
Sustainability-Driven Product Development
More packaged food products are working to build a stronger future for their community and the planet. “Whether it’s plant-based foods, regenerative agriculture, or upcycling—the trend continues to be values that center a path towards more sustainability,” notes Trendspotter Reem Assil, chef and owner of Reem’s California.
Examples include a grass-fed milk chocolate collection from Alter Eco that is made with Peruvian cocoa sourced from fair trade farms that practice restorative farming methods. Another confectioner, U.K.-based Flower & White, has introduced plastic-free packaging for its line of meringue bars, now available in paper sleeves.
Incubator Village, an area on the Esplanade Level highlighting food incubators and the startups that partner with them, showcases several sustainability-minded snack companies. For instance, 12 Tides Seaweed sources organic seaweed from regenerative North American Ocean Farms to create snacks while Ugly Pickle upcycles farm surplus and irregular produce to make pickles and spreads.
Global Sauces and Seasonings
Seasonings and sauces touting flavors and recipes from around the world will be prevalent at the show. “Much like Sriracha has joined the diner and coffeeshop ranks side by side with ketchup, the same will happen for banana ketchup and mayo-ketchup,” says Trendspotter and food columnist Illyana Masonet.
On the radar at this show are sauces and dressings from various regions of Asia. Angkor Cambodian Food is exhibiting its Tuk Meric and Kroeung Prawlak, a tangy peppery sauce and a marinade for Cambodian BBQ meat on a stick, respectively. Burma Love Foods is showcasing Fermented Tea Leaf Dressing, traditional Burmese dressing made locally from tea leaves imported from Burma. KPOP Foods has a Kimchi Mayo Sauce, a flavorful aioli sauce, and The Spice Hunter is showcasing Japanese 7 Spice, traditionally known as Shichimi Togarashi, or seven-flavor chile.
More trends and innovations from the Trendspotters will be reported in tomorrow morning’s edition of the Show Daily.