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Five trends to watch for at SIAL Paris

Little luxuries and technology tracking will be key trends on the trade show floor

Key players in the food industry are gearing up to display their latest goods at the SIAL Paris trade show next week (October 16-20), the largest exhibition for food innovation in the world. Here are some major trends that will permeate the show, based on global research compiled for “Food 360,” an exclusive report developed for SIAL.

Going back to basics: Consumers are still opting for local, authentic, simple products as they are more and more convinced food can cause serious health problems. Six in 10 pay attention to food package labels and two out of three are always on the lookout for suspect ingredients.

Food as art: The connection between basic food and innovation has merged into the “Neo Mix and Match” trend, a form of fusion fare inspired by the fashion world. Manufacturers are adding glam to ordinary food with unexpected ingredients. Truffle burger or camel milk cappuccino anyone?

Little luxuries: Current economic struggles aside, today’s consumers are looking for occasional moments of indulgence that won’t break the bank. But it has to be pretty, so producers are putting a major emphasis on design. Think dried Morello mushrooms packaged in a lovely transparent ball.

Spotlight on the sustainable: Most consumers globally (81%) consider it important to buy food products that won’t harm the environment so less packaging  and less waste is the priority. (A new refrigerated yogurt drink from France with a re-sealable tap can stay fresh 10 days after opening.) Animal welfare is also a key issue with more products emphasizing ingredients garnered from “respectfully treated” livestock.

Technology tracking: In the same way chefs display their cooking prowess in open kitchens, manufacturers are showing how they make and prepare foods via packaging codes consumers can follow up on via the Internet. By scanning a code, consumers will also know how many pesticides, calories or fat content a product contains.

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