Food Culture and Eating Trends in 2021-2023

Where have you spent most of your time last year? Probably in the kitchen… and you’re not alone, according to PWC consumers report, 51% of Americans have reported a significant increase in home cooking as a result, of course, of the current pandemic. It’s a fact: food is an accessible source of comfort for all of us during these chaotic times. This is why after 2020 was filled with failed cooking attempts, in 2021 consumers are more aware of the type of food they want to buy, make and taste. In recent months, consumers have shown interest in recipes and themed food blogs concerned with different values (proteins based on plants, vegans, ketogenic diets, etc.), in constructing diets tailored to our health needs, in consuming products that are available in our nearby community and acquiring awareness to purchasing products that promote cultural and economic equality.


All these new links imply that people understand that the acceptable limiting diet does not longer serve each and every individual’s physical and emotional wellbeing. Leading worldwide dietitians have accordingly began to teach people that they should avoid diets that have many constrictions and which ignore the needs of the individual, and man’s changing needs; seasonal, geographical, according to different bodily figures and mental needs. These concepts are supported by the data of the IFIC (International Food Information Council) Foundation, who have stated in their 2019 food and health report that 39% of Americans prefer a fully aware and intuitive eating, surrounding the principle of listening to our changing bodily needs. Thus, we can trace 3 trends that will be prominent in the next years, all of which we are familiar with in one way or another. However, all 3 together create a very clear picture of what our eating habits would look like in the next 2 years.




Mastering Our Eating

In light of the events of this last year, we feel even weaker than before, and want to strengthen ourselves by developing a heightened awareness to ourselves in every field. Due to the pandemic, people have become more aware to diseases that cannot be transmitted (background diseases), and to the impact of their overall lifestyle on their health. Therefore, many consumers will look for dietary solutions that are personally tailored to their unique circumstances – such as eating the supports heart health, easting to treat diabetes, or seasonal eating to prevent diseases. This need is already answered through the two popular apps ZOE and Wellory, that help users create their own dietary plan, by personalizing their diet according to individual biometric data, and regular consultation with a digital nutritionist. Furthermore, Michelle Babb’s book Mastering Mindful Eating and Evelyn Tribole’s Intuitive Eating for Every Day, the former published as early as December 2020, that teach and assist people to adjust their diets according to the individual needs of their bodies. This trend should be recognized by food manufacturers and make them think how they can support this need when they introduce new products to the market. Consumers look for more detailed information about the type of ingredients their food contains; for instance, the percentage of the organic components, which of the ingredients is locally products, which are appropriate for pregnant women, etc. Consumers are willing to invest and go to great lengths for such products (special delis, local farms, etc.), and pay for such products appropriately, as they will assist them in Mastering Our Eating.


The History of Our Plate

People increasingly recognize that history as described in history books doesn’t always reflect reality as people experienced it; the same goes for food. Western culinary culture isn’t the only or most accurate one. We have much to learn from more simplistic nutritional methods, and not just by offering new interpretations to traditional dishes. In the next years, we will witness more chefs offering us dishes based on Chinese medicine, the Ayurveda theory, and slow cooking methods by different communities, that would allow esoteric food cultures to reach mainstream culture. This trend is part of a much wider movement that breaks consensuses of the culinary world as we have known it, and allows local chefs and leading culinary individuals, to raise their heads in small communities and ask for recognition without owing a great culinary establishment or graduating from prestigious culinary schools. Institutions led by culinary influencers have already adjusted themselves to this trend, which is currently at its peak, such as the food magazine Bon Appetit and the food section (Cooking and food) of the New York Times, who have been printing more and more articles and columns about BIPOC.


What You Eat Before Bed Matters

It is widely accepted that having a good night’s sleep is a guarantee for good health. And health, as you well know, is very important these days. The constant commotion of everything happening around us, affects our capacity to be calm and relaxed, as well as on the quality of our sleep. But did you know that having difficulties falling asleep can be resolved by consuming the right kinds of foods and beverages, which can also ensure improved quality of sleep? As it would seem, consumers’ awareness to eating light snacks, drinking tea blends and eating desserts that contain natural essences and nutritious ingredients that promote a sense of relaxation, has grown. The market of foods that supports this approach is on the rise these last six months, and offers solutions that promote bodily relaxation and assist us to sleep better even on our most busiest days. There is quite a number of brans that offer their buyers unique ingredients combinations that support better sleep. They include essences such as lavender, passion fruits, minerals such as magnesium, along with Casein protein, and foods such as sour cherries that are enriched with melatonin. I have no doubt that in 2021, these options will continue to grow and offer the exhausted consumers, new options to support and improve their sleep. If you’d like to further explore this topic, I highly recommend logging into these websites and seeing how it’s done: Nightfood Ice Cream, Som Sleep, Good Source Snacks Evening Chill.


For more on the Leading Food Trends of 2021, Read: Seasoning and Spices Market 2021 Review.