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// 5 food and drink trends that smashed 2022

Written by Cracked // 14th December 2022

We’ve been itching to get our hands on the latest trend reports. For our foodie appetites – obviously – and so we can keep helping our clients eclipse the competition with more relevant and timely strategies! 

Trends shape the food and drink industry. Whether it’s driven by consumer demand or political and environmental influence, brands across the food and drink world must always have their fingers on the pulse to not only meet demand but innovate and lead the way for others.  

As the year wraps up, we’re looking back on predicted 2022 food and drink trends that are here to stay, and dishing up five more that we hope will stick in 2023! 

Digital, at your service!

One of the largest trends to come out of the pandemic was the rise in digital technologies and experiences with food and drink. 2022 proved that digital’s here to serve and it’s here to stay, from point-of-sale (POS) ordering and food-to-go platforms on the consumer side, to enhancing back of house ordering and stock checking for businesses.  

QR code overlaying image of food

A great example of digital technologies enhancing the consumer experience was Yolk’s Spotify QR codes, suggested for customers to listen to whilst eating to make the dining experience more enjoyable! Companies like Neat Burger also showed how brands can use technology to create transparency in the supply chain and build stronger connections with value-driven consumers. 

Flavours ‘off the beaten track’ are now ‘on track’

In 2020-21, travel rules and restrictions kept consumers seeking new and exciting foreign flavours closer to home. With the UK being a multi-cultural nation, the odds of finding adventure are always going to be high. 

Bidfood predicted ‘flavours less travelled’ such as Filipino would gain traction in 2022. If our autumn food tour was anything to go by, Filipino flavours were as prevalent then as they were at the start, and gave brands the opportunity be playful with unique and buzzworthy flavours. 

[1] https://www.bidfood.co.uk/food-and-drink-trends-2022/flavours-less-travelled/

TikTok trends that ruled them all

TikTok videos have continued to influence the food and drink industry, with TikTok now being the social media platform for foodies around the world to invent new drinks or innovate old recipes. #FoodTikTok alone had over 100bn hits…![1] One of the booming trends to come from TikTok was the idea of ‘nextovers’ – surplus ingredients turned into something completely different the next day. Think Monday’s mashed potato in Tuesday’s fish cake, or Friday’s grilled chicken breasts in Saturday’s stir fry! And as the cost-of-living crisis continues, we expect people to be increasingly savvy and creative with ‘nextovers’. 

And did you ever catch the whipped feta wave on TikTok? With over 40 million views, and supermarket sales up by 33% (May 2022 to June 2022)1, it was hard to miss! In terms of NPD, we saw Waitrose and Sainsbury’s Taste the Difference get involved with their own takes on whipped feta dips in the summer months. 

[1] Waitrose & Partners Food and Drink Report 2022-23

[2] Mintel Global Consumer Trends Report 2023

The CBD-infused future is now

Awareness of CBD’s benefits has gotten progressively better the more it’s been looked into. In fact, the global CBD beverage market was predicted to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 61.1% between 2021-2026.[1] So, it’s no coincidence that 2022 has seen more and more CBD-infused drinks as the year’s gone on. From CBD-infused coffee in cafés around the country to CBD-infused cocktails and soft drinks taking up more shelf space in supermarkets, CBD’s been a revelation in the consumer market, and we think its influence will only continue to spread for years to come.

[1] 360 Market Updates’ Global CBD Beverages Sales Market Report 2020

But enough with looking back. Let’s dig into what’s coming in 2023!

With lots of reports now live, it’s safe to say next year has a feast of trends in store for us. Handpicking a few was tricky, but these are the trends we see playing a key role.

Creativity in the kitchen 

We’re only in the initial stages of the cost-of-living crisis (and the recession), and it’s already influencing home cooking. In the recent Waitrose and Partners trends report, they found that 63% of respondents felt guilty about food waste.[5] Plus, more of us are getting creative with the air fryer trend (with sales up 3,000% in a year) thanks to its energy efficiency compared to ovens.

Thrift and frugality are in, flashy shows of wealth are out. But, with the helping hand of technology, influencer recipes, supermarket initiatives, and advice on cutting down on food waste, creativity is going to be a buzzword in the kitchen that’ll resonate right the way through.

Welcome to the “Phygital” world

While the world has embraced a more digital experience (both consumer-facing and B2B), in 2023 we’re going to experience how the best of both the digital and physical world can co-exist and create truly memorable experiences. From live-streamed retailer videos and digital point-of-sale displays to… who knows… maybe metaverse experiences! 24% of UK consumers would be interested in shopping in the metaverse2, so why not?! 

boy with virtual reality headset on eating popcorn

A ‘glocal’ way of consuming

Extreme weather patterns caused by global warming are felt much closer to home, prompting many to become more aware of where their food comes from. The new ‘in’ word? Glocal! The term for thinking globally but eating locally. 

People have spoken. They want to know if workers have been paid fairly (22%), if the animals were looked after (28%), as well as the story behind what they’re buying.If big brands don’t step up to the plate, consumers aren’t afraid to go elsewhere. What does this mean? An opportunity for brands to form stronger bonds with current customers and attract new ones! 

Coffee-less coffee

Wait… no coffee in a cup of coffee? At first, we thought the same as you. ‘Coffee-less coffee’ sounds a lot like decaf coffee, right? Well, with climate scientists warning that coffee plants are becoming more and more at risk due to climate change, numerous start-ups are finding authentic and drinkable alternatives that don’t need coffee plants at all.

Atomo – a Seattle-based company – is off to a cracking start with its beanless cold brew.

We expect this to be a hot topic in the coffee industry in 2023 and believe it won’t be long before we’re all drinking coffee-less coffee deep into the night!

Yes, the wine labels are talking to you!

If your wine label starts talking to you, we promise it’s not (always) an illusion. If you’re unsure what a wine tastes like or want professional guidance on what to pair a particular wine with, QR codes are the way wine and spirit brands are going to spill it all to you. 

QR codes in themselves have experienced a somewhat meteoric reincarnation since the pandemic, and brands from both the food and drink world are getting creative with how they can unleash knowledge and stories through a simple scan.

The food and drink world never fails to deliver the downright daring and tantalisingly tasty trends. The past year proved how brands and consumers continue to inspire one another in the face of global turmoil – sometimes unknowingly so. As for the future? Well, these trends are just the tip of the iceberg.

To keep up with them, understand them, and use them to your benefit, we recommend getting in touch! 2023, let’s get cracking…

Say Hi!

1] https://startupbonsai.com/influencer-marketing-statistics/

[2] Waitrose & Partners Food and Drink Report 2022-23

[3] Mintel Global Consumer Trends Report 2023

[4] 360 Market Updates’ Global CBD Beverages Sales Market Report 2020

[5] https://startupbonsai.com/influencer-marketing-statistics/

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