5 New Food Trends Earning End-of-Year Buzz

New food trends are still brewing, sweeping social feeds, and capturing Millennials’ and Gen Z’s attention, in the last weeks of 2017…

We’ve covered lot of buzzed about, and Instagrammable, food trends this year, from goth ice cream to lattes poured into avocados (aka avolattes). And of course, foodie favorite avocado toast went from mere trending menu item to an international discussion point in the ongoing debate about Millennial spending. Food fads not only have the power to create cultural touchpoints amongst young consumers, they’re also a topic of endless fascination. Our post on the 10 food trends Millennial foodies want to try most was one of our most clicked of the year, and the list included some of 2017’s most popular food fads/innovations, from sushi burritos and donuts to rainbow foods. But 2017 isn’t over yet.

We’re seeing some new food trends take over social feeds and headlines in the last weeks of the year. Here are five new foodie fads, big and small, sweeping social feeds, making headlines, and earning end-of-year buzz:

1. Fake Meat

Fake meat sales reportedly are soaring, thanks to young consumers. According to Business Insider, young adults and teens are embracing alternatives to meat and seafood, and the sales of plant-based meat are expected to surpass $5 billion by 2020. Gen Z told Ypulse they’re interested in vegan diets, and businesses are cropping up to cater to their plant-based nutrition needs. Impossible Foods is selling a veggie burger that bleeds to college campuses and beloved burger restaurants alike, while New Wave Foods and Ocean Hunger Foods’ seafood alternatives are getting more attention. We’ve followed the rising popularity of The Impossible Burger—a vegetarian burger that bleeds—calling out Impossible as a food pioneer who could change the…

 
 

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Quote of the Day: “Being famous is overrated. I would be more happy [sic] being locally known for the good I do in the world in a popular way but not for the wrong reasons.”—Female, 16, UT

Minecraft is being used to get kids interested in reading actual, real books. Litcraft recreates the world of a book as an interactive Minecraft map, adding “educational tasks” throughout. Treasure Island was the first completed world, followed by Kensuke's Kingdom, while The Lord of the Flies and Dante’s Inferno are in the works. Trials at U.K. schools are being met with “an enthusiastic response,” so Litcraft is eyeing a larger rollout. (The Guardian)

Nordstrom is stocking up on Instafamous brands like Allbirds, Everlane, and Reformation. The company announced that “strategic” brands account for about 40% of their current revenue and that’s expected to rise. While they benefit from indie brands’ popularity with young consumers, the direct-to-consumer brands are getting an expanded physical footprint, too. In the case of Reformation, Nordstrom explains that they “can bring sustainable fashion to a new (and much bigger) group of customers and closets.” (Business Insider)

A baseball team struck out with their “Millennial Night” promotion, putting Twitter in an uproar. We’ve warned brands that making fun of Millennials is not the way to get earn their spending power, and minor league baseball’s Montgomery Biscuits learned the lesson first-hand. Their “Millennial Night” offered participation ribbons, selfie stations, napping areas, and “lots of avocados,” while playing into stereotypes about Millennials being lazy. A Biscuits exec explains that “Something got lost in the sarcasm,” but instead of offering an apology, they doubled down with another cutting tweet. (AdweekInc.)

Nearly half of Millennials think that “their credit scores are holding them back.” OppLoans found that 27% of 18-34-year-olds haven’t been approved for a new car because of their credit while 25% have been declined for an apartment or house. Debt, a top financial concern for Millennials, is partly to blame: 15% said that their debt “is unmanageable.” Education could help dig them out of the hole, as 24% feel they’ve never learned how to build good credit. (Moneyish)

Baby Einstein is growing up for Millennial parents with a new mission and campaign. Their “Ignite a Curious Mind” effort goes after parents, not kids, with short spots that encourage curiosity. They’re also working on new toys, moving beyond their “sweet spot” of zero to 12 months for toddlers. Baby Einstein’s parent company, Kids II is also planning on reworking other brands, like Bright Starts and Ingenuity. (Ad Age)

Quote of the Day: “[American Eagle Outfitters’] clothes are generally what I wear and are my style. They're comfortable and affordable. They do not do a great deal of vanity sizing and offer something for guys and girls of every size.”—Female, 23, GA

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