CONSUMER, FOOD, FLAVOR & INDUSTRY TRENDS: Q2 2022

2022 HOW

SKYROCKETING

GAS PRICES

IMPACT MENUS

Technomic Industry Insights April 2022 Source: Technomic Ignite Menu Q4 2020-Q4 2021

Technomic recently launched a whitepaper, Skyrocketing Gas Prices: What Does This Mean for Restaurants? According to the whitepaper, 86% of consumers say that rising gas prices are having an impact on their spending on other goods and services. Restaurants are the main areas where consumers are cutting back due to high gas prices.

Ignite Menu helps illuminate exactly what restaurants are doing to combat consumer cutbacks. We know that people economize when eating out by foregoing extras—this is reflected in the year-over-year data, with non-alcohol beverages and desserts declining on menus, while entrees show slight growth. Some value meals, in particular, are on the rise, namely salad value meals (+92%), breakfast value meals (+7%) and even fish/shellfish value meals (+6%), proving that operators are meeting consumers where they’re at financially right now.

Image Source: Shutterstock

86% of consumers

say that rising

gas prices are

having an impact

on their spending.

Further, operators are reaching for over-the-top items to draw consumers in right now. Among the limited-time offers rated as having the highest draw in the past quarter are a burger containing four different meats, wings with pumpkin spice and Buffalo cauliflower. In other words, these are items that are hard to replicate at home—a great tactic for operators struggling to get consumers in the door.

Operators

are reaching

for over-the-top

items to draw

consumers in.

Sandwich Value Meals +5%

Image Source: Shutterstock

Salad Value Meals +5%

Image Source: Shutterstock

A major burger chain has a patty made with a blend of two-parts Wagyu beef and one-part brisket, charred jalapeños, candied ghost pepper bacon, habanero pepper jack cheese, hot steak sauce, and sweet tomato relish (Image Source: burger chain website).

Image Source: Shutterstock

Emotions Continue to Play a Role in Snacking

Rewarding oneself with a snack is the most common form of emotional eating. Boredom, stress, anxiety and happiness all play a role in consumer snacking behavior, particularly among younger consumers. This aligns with an increasing demand, especially among younger cohorts, for calming/stress-relieving snack attributes.

Suppliers and operators can work together to gain market share by developing and leveraging a strong emotional connection with consumers through a clearer understanding of their psychological motivations.

Apart from treating themselves with snacking options, consumers often look to between-meal food for vitality, seeking out snacks that make them feel mentally and physically invigorated, stimulated and revitalized. Positioning that highlights these attributes in snacks may help to improve sales and drive incremental traffic.

Base: 1,501 consumers
Q: What motivates you to have a snack? Please select all that apply. Source: Technomic Ignite Consumer featuring the Technomic 2022 US Snacking Occasion Consumer Trend Report

50 MENU TRENDS TO WATCH

Image Source: Carlitosph.com

What is Alavar Sauce?

Alavar is a sauce credited as invented by Maria Teresa Camins Alavar, from Zamboanga in Mindanao, Philippines. This local dish is made with Spanner crabs, coconut milk, crab fat and spices. It is also known as ‘Curacha con salsa Alavar’ or Curacha in Alavar sauce.

1. Alavar Sauce
Philippine sauce of coconut milk, crab fat and spices (pictured left)

2. Alfajor
Sweet made of a paste of almonds, nuts, breadcrumbs and honey

3. Amazake
Low-alcohol Japanese drink made from fermented rice

4. Awarma
Lebanese lamb confit

5. Balsamic Cocktails
Adult beverages infused with the dark Italian vinegar

6. Basturma
Seasoned, air-dried cured beef popular in Balkan and Middle Eastern cuisines

7. Buffalo Brussels Sprouts
The Buffalo-sauced veggies trend in its next iteration

8. Calasparra Rice
Spanish rice variety

9. Corn Silk
Threads that grow under the husk of an ear of corn, often consumed as a tea

10. Dill Pollen
Finishing herb harvested from the pinprick flowers of the dill plant

11. Eggplant Cocktails
Adult beverages featuring the purple plant

12. Ensaymada
Mallorcan pastry

13. Florina Pepper
Greek red pepper with rich, sweet flavor

14. Hallabong
Korean hybrid citrus that tastes similar to a mandarin

15. Hay Desserts
Dried grass imparting a subtle toasty flavor in sweets

16. Ice Cider
Fermented beverage made from the juice of frozen apples

17. Kakigori
Japanese shaved ice dessert (pictured right)

18. Linden Flower
Plant with dried flowers that are mildly sweet and sticky

19. Mala Oil
Sichuan chile oil

20. Marsala-Based Cocktails
Drinks featuring the fortified Italian wine, traditionally used for cooking

Image Source: Shutterstock

Kakigori

Kakigori is a Japanese shaved ice dessert typically featuring syrup and a sweetener, often condensed milk. Independent operators are serving this dessert with a plethora of flavors, ranging from sweet fruits and cookie butter to bitter coffee to tart rhubarb.

On the Menu

Matcha Kakigori—lavender and rhubarb ice cream, salted cream, mango syrup, matcha and white chocolate (Hestia in Austin, Texas)
Coffee Milk Shaved Ice—coffee, Tonchin honey cream sauce and vanilla ice cream (Tonchin in New York City)
Seasonal Kakigori—miso honey ice cream, blood orange syrup, honeycomb crunch, smoked honey and snowcap (Gaijin in Chicago)

21. Meaty Vinaigrette
The oil-vinegar dressing combined with meat

22. Miner’s Lettuce
Small, herbaceous, vitamin-rich plant

23. Mushroom Desserts
Sweets featuring the fungus

24. Mustard Frills
Red or green leaves of the mustard plant

25. Non-alcohol Tequila
Alcohol-free version of the agave-based spirit

26. Non-alcohol Whiskey
Alcohol-free version of the distilled spirit

27. Non-Pork Mortadella
The cold cut made with a protein other than pork

28. Non-Steak Au Poivre Preparations
French peppercorn coating preparation with ingredients other than steak (pictured below)

29. Nora Pepper
Red, round pepper used for the production of paprika

30. Pickled Herbs
Plants that have been preserved in vinegar or brine

Image Source: Shutterstock

31. Pil-Pil
Basque sauce made by cooking skin-in salt cod fillets in garlic-infused oil and emulsifying the left-behind protein traces (pictured right)

32. Rabarbaro
Chinese rhubarb-based amaro liqueur

33. Rakomelo
Greek mixed alcohol drink with brandy, honey and spices

34. Revamped Moon Pies
New versions of the graham cookie-marshmallow dessert

35. Rof
Senegalese topping or dressing made with parsley, garlic, scallions and Scotch bonnet chiles

36. Salsify Two Ways
Root vegetable with a similar flavor as oysters, prepared in more than one way in a single dish

37. Sfeeha
Lebanese meat pie

38. Shinko Pear
Asian fruit with rich, sweet flavor

Image Source: Shutterstock

39. Smetana
Central and Eastern European dairy product made by souring heavy cream

40. Sugar Kelp
Yellowish brown marine algae

41. Sugar Rush Chile
Long, peach-colored Peruvian pepper with sweet flavor and smoky, complex heat

42. Sunflower Honey
Sweet fluid that is made from the nectar of sunflowers

43. Tarama
Eggless emulsion

44. Tigernuts
Chewy marble-sized tubers that taste similar to almonds or pecans

45. Tinapa
Filipino term for fish cooked or preserved through a smoking process

46. Tomato Passata
Uncooked tomato puree

47. Upscale Pigs in a Blanket
Chic versions of the mini hot dog-crescent roll snack

48. Urfa Biber Cocktails
Adult beverages featuring the Turkish dried chile

49. Veronique
A preparation style, typically with fish, featuring a buttery sauce and whole grapes

50. Wakamomo
Unripe baby Japanese peaches

KEY THEMES & TAKEAWAYS FROM TOP 50 MENU TRENDS

Common Ingredients Find Momentum in New Mealparts

Indies are spotlighting balsamic vinegar, eggplant and Marsala wine in cocktails, mushrooms in desserts and meat in vinaigrettes. This is a fantastic display of taking advantage of fewer SKUs in multiple mealparts.

Unique Preparations Abound

Brussels sprouts are getting the Buffalo wings treatment. Herbs are getting pickled. Operators are swapping pork with rabbit for mortadella and steak with veggies or fish for au poivre preps. Pigs in a blanket and moon pies are getting revamped. The sky’s the limit for innovative preps.

Fish and Seafood Take the Spotlight

A number of new sauces and preparations highlighted in this quarter’s report are being applied to fish and seafood dishes. Operators are featuring salsify two ways atop dover sole, Alavar sauce on crab, tarama with oysters, local fish veronique, hay-poached turbot and rof sauce with snapper.

Need help translating these trends to your menu? Contact a Kagome Sales Rep today!

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