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7 Trends to Watch for 2016…

Posted on 15/12/2015

While the fundamentals of commerce remain the same, the landscape is changing at the speed of technology, meaning what matters now is how these fundamentals are activated. Smart organisations anticipate the next big thing and keep ahead of their competitors. Here are what I predict will be the developing trends in the food industry next year.

Convenience

Convenience plays a big part in consumers' everyday lives. We are becoming a time poor society which means consumers need make the most of it, whether they decide to spend it dining with their loved ones, alone or socialising with friends. To stay relevant, organisations need to re-think how they can create, add and deliver value to consumers focusing on time saving solutions.

Driving Delivery

Popular apps that simplify online and mobile ordering make dining in even easier.  Delivery services such as Just Eat, Hungry House and Deliveroo are starting to reach far beyond urban centres, bringing the convenience of a restaurant meal to living rooms. Other services such as Uber and Amazon have their eyes on grocery delivery whilst entrepreneurs are launching new franchising companies offering online food deliveries.

Free-From Food

Many consumers have made up their minds before scientists have reached any consensus but artificial ingredients are out as consumers choose to eat food that provides nutrition benefitting their physical and mental wellbeing. Restaurants, grocery and convenience stores will ensure they are meeting this demand for free-from options.

Flavours & Fashion

Smoky is the new spicy - it's appearing as a flavour on menus throughout the UK. Look for more charred or roasted-vegetable side dishes, desserts with charred fruits or burnt-sugar and cocktails featuring smoked salt, smoked ice or smoky syrups. Food has become fashionable so we expect to see even more unique meal combinations on social media platforms such as Instagram and Pinterest.

Eating to Suit Lifestyles

Our shopping habits (little, often and local), our dining behaviours (informal with sharing platters) and who we decide to eat with, will continue to be defined by our lifestyles. In the foodservice sector, consumers are gravitating to a higher standard of casual dining formats which is transforming the industry, creating a subset of casual dining operators with fresher menus, contemporary interior designs and a price threshold that is affordable. I believe we will see more personalisation, allowing consumers to choose the ingredients in their meals with healthier eating forming their decisions. In retail, consumers will continue to gravitate towards food with smaller pack sizes that allow for minimal storage space.

Innovation Everywhere

With foodservice operators and retailers facing issues such as rising minimum wages and a slower than expected reform in rental rates, pressure to drive efficiencies elsewhere will intensify. With inflation expected to rise in 2016, savvy companies will drive innovation as a strategic initiative to deliver top line growth.  Brands will experiment with technological advances in the kitchens, dining rooms and in store.

Fragmentation of Retail

While the internet has not yet vastly changed the landscape of grocery shopping, innovations encourage consumers to think outside the traditional retail box. Global digitalisation, changing cultural norms, regional availability and demographic shifts will continue to fragment the retail market with small to mid-size organisations carving out specific niches.   

As another year closes, I would like to thank everyone who has worked with Aviko and the wider food industry for the progress we have made. I trust you will find the Q4 newsletter informative and as ever, we are always happy to receive feedback/suggestions/ideas from our customers. Please feel free to get in touch with me directly at m.essa@aviko.com or through our customer service centre at ukhelpdesk@aviko.com

Merry Christmas and a healthy and prosperous 2016 to everyone!

Mohammed Essa
General Manager
Aviko UKI