Thursday, 3 January 2013

Foodie forecasts for 2013: What's new on the horizon?

Veggies will be King in 2013
What's likely to appear on our culinary horizon this year ? Seeking enlightenment I surfed the net and looked at what the foodie forecasts are for 2013. Interestingly experts from throughout the Western world are making similar predictions including:
  •  Veggies will move to centre stage and will become a bigger part and sometimes the whole meal.  I love my veggies but my carniverous partner will rebel against this trend. It will test my culinary creativity to the limits to make him like them so much that he no longer craves meat for dinner each night.
  • The demand for local, organic and natural will continue to grow.Kiwis are a forward looking lot and we have already been taking this on board over the last few years. Our Sunday and Farmer's markets are a treasure and hopefully they'll continue to grow and proliferate.
  • Artisan products will increase in popularity. I'm all for it. I love buying quality products made by small kiwi producers, and there are lots of them. .Even when we try to spend less on food, one small luxury item like this can lift our whole eating experience.
  • Sustainable fish will be preferred by an increasing number of consumers around the world, including kiwis as they become aware of how scarily fast the depletion of fish in our oceans is progressing. But although fish is very healthy it's expensive in New Zealand ( which never fails to surprise me as we're an island nation) so it is not on our dinner table as often as it should be. Canned tuna is very affordable. Pam's and Ceres Brands are line caught so I buy these.
  • At restaurants small desserts will be served  and they will be very creative takes on old favourites. No more large slices of apple pie, cheesecake or crumble. Most women won't mind, blokes might.
  • More streetfoods and pop up restaurants.These will not just sell greasy chips and burgers. They will sell healthy, local food that is nourishing and cheap. Sounds great. I love grazing in unexpected places.
  • There'll be oodles of noodles in all their varieties including fresh. If this means  lots of quick nourishing dishes that can be whipped up in no time at all I'll happily embrace this trend.  
  • Oddly, popcorn keeps popping up. But not the unhealthy kind loaded with saturated fats sold in movie theatres. Out will go the fat and in will go flavours. And  popcorn will be served as part of a dinner plate or even in icecream. It sounds strange but I'm happy to try anything which  is full of goodness: fibre rich and low on calories.
  • Korean Food will become the new ethnic favourite. There's a whole lot to explore starting with kimbap (sushi) and the korean barbecue.
  • Tea will be a hot item. Fine as long as it's looseleaf and available alongside a good cup of coffee in  local cafes. It would take a lot to move me away from a flat white when I'm out although I love a good cuppa at home, any kind gumboot, herbal or green.
  • Fair trade and Ethical. In New Zealand  Fair Trade Coffee, chocolate and bananas are already capturing a sizeable chunk of our market and hopefully this trend will continue to increase . Fair Trade ice-blocks have just made an appearance. But what  ethical means needs to be more clearly defined. It's easy for a producer to say they are ethical but in what way and how can the consumer be sure?
  •  One glaring omission is any mention of  the continued popularity of home baking. I can't see kiwis doing less of it in 2013. Why should we ? There's nothing wrong with an occasional home baked treat. And what would cafes be without cakes. muffins and slices?
  • Last but not least let's hope the price of food staples stays the same or better still goes down so every family can afford to put food on the table and send their kids off to school with a healthy lunch.


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