You might think that the food we eat is fairly basic and doesn’t have much opportunity in the way of changing or becoming better, but just like technology has made leaps and bounds in recent decades, our eating choices are about to embark on the same path. Experts in the industry are excited for what 2018 will bring, as the way food is produced, packaged, marketed, and sold could see some major changes.
There are a variety of themes present in the year ahead, ones that point directly to the food we eat and others that tackle more global areas of consumption and sales. What changes are on the horizon and how can c-stores and micro markets cash in on these opportunities?
Ten Upcoming Food Trends In 2018
When it comes to the food industry, there are a plethora of ways that we can transform current processes and products to keep up with every other facet of modern society. Here’s what is being forecasted as the top trends this year.
Today’s generation of farmers has more advanced degrees and technology at their disposal than ever before. Using plant-based ingredients and cashing in on unusual places to plant crops, fresh food is taking the world by storm.
If you’ve ever used an app or voice-activated device to order groceries from the store, you’ve seen first-hand how convenient it can be. With household goods being ordered this way, it opens up space for grocery retailers to focus on unique and interesting foods.
3. Emotional Eating
Often considered to be an issue of security, food manufacturers are considering what stress and anxiety are doing to our nation. Combining quick and easy items that are also nutritional seems to be a win-win for c-stores and busy consumers alike.
By shifting away from classic prepackaged snacks with low nutritional value, micro markets can shift their approach to offering products with an awareness of ingredients, sustainability, and ethical sourcing.
5. Sensory Opportunities
With an increase in items that give tactile feedback, like typewriters for your iPad, food manufacturers are looking at ways to create packaging with various sounds and textures. This type of focus could make a major impact on the grab-and-go and hand-held snacks found in c-stores.
How foods affect our brain is the basis of this science, which heavily pertains to micro-market customers. When individuals have a high level of performance to maintain at work, they often rely on quick meals. Many healthy options at a c-store could be the answer to better business.
Changing the message communicated from c-stores to consumers is a huge opportunity, as customers want to connect with the food their eating. Shifting the focus from quick and tasty, no matter what the nutritional value, to one of easy and healthy, should be a goal for everyone in the food business in 2018.
8. Stores Of The Future
How a micro market is designed now could change in the coming years, as experts are reevaluating the shopping experience. Across the world, factories, restaurants, and grocery stores are being housed in massive complexes to meet all needs in one trip.
2018 will see a focus on the politics of food, looking at regulations that help to eliminate food insecurity and remove antibiotics in the farming industry. Stores who align with certain legislators might find more success than others.
Using technology to create foods for specific demographics can bring a wealth of opportunity for c-stores and micro markets. Anything from vegan options to foods engineered to taste like other products will create an engaging selection for customers.
It’s a matter of time before we see how these trends really take shape in 2018, but there’s plenty of opportunity for micro markets and c-stores alike to jump on the trend bandwagon and work to constantly improve their products, selection, and the message they deliver to their customers.