Where food is going

Trendy and trending in 2016

What trends are in store in the food world for 2016?

For the most part, a continuation of what was already happening in 2015: consumers want more healthy, natural and possibly sustainable food. As it turns out however, those words mean different things to different people, so let’s take a look at e few of the trends.

Ancient and gluten-free grains
If even Italians are eating less pasta, then you know wheat is in trouble, and for several reasons, such as: concerns about overconsumption of carbs, a dislike for GMO food, and real or supposed allergies and intolerances to gluten, although gluten-free, corn and rice seem to be on the same slow way down.

At the same time, the market is growing for ancient and sprouted grains such as quinoa, kamut, farro, spelt, and so on. They’ve been around since forever, but always shadowed by the supremacy of wheat and corn.

Spiralised vegetables
If pasta is seen more and more as a high-calorie, low-nutrient vehicle for the real deal (the sauce), then a vegetable substitute makes perfect sense: enter zoodles, or noodles made from spiralised zucchini.

Sugary beverages
As expected, they’re going down, although not everywhere.

The meat world is a complex one. Here is a well-done map showing the global trends of meat consumption.

In brief:

  • Beef: down in Europe and in the US, up in South America and even more in Asia
  • Poultry: pretty much up everywhere
  • Pork: it’s complicated

2016 will be FAO’s International Year of Pulses. Because they tick all the boxes for the ideal type of food: low in carbs and high in protein, and nitrogen, which is good for the soil.

So get ready to hear about lentils a lot and eat more of them, more or less consciously.

Want more trends?
You know a trend is irreversible when big food companies are changing their supply chain to accommodate consumer’s tastes.
Such as: chickens with no antibiotics, free range eggs, fewer additives, organic and minimally processed foods.

And if you want to take a serious look into the far future, here’s what’s awaiting.

The food we eat

Step away from that Coke

Know who your added sugars are in order to eliminate them from your diet: that will be the single best thing you can do for your health. Here is why.


The one thing they did not talk about in Paris

The COP21 conference on climate was the big event on December 2015.If you want to know what they talked about, there are plenty of articles on the internet. One thing that was left out however, was sustainable food production. Just a small, insignificant detail…



Consumption of red meat in China will explode by 2025, so they need more cows and they need them fast. And they found a quite straightforward long-term solution for that: cloning.

While the EU is traditionally against genetically engineered food, and animals in particular, and the US recently approved a genetically engineered salmon as fit for consumption after years, the Chinese really seem to be less fussy about the whole idea of eating cloned animals.

Food waste

Bring the pigswill back

With all due respect for dogs, pig is the real man’s best friend. It’s the most omnivorous animal there is, and it can eat any type of food waste.

Then, in 2001 a pig that had been fed with rotten pigswill became Patient Zero of a massive outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease in the UK, which caused millions of animals to be slaughtered. After that, food waste for pigs was completely banned in the EU.

The ban was effective (no more major epidemics happened since then), but it also had undesirable consequences: a lot of land is now being used to grow soy to feed pigs instead of humans, and food waste gets wasted for real.

Now, a study from the University of Cambridge explains why that ban was like killing a mosquito with a cannon. Pigs in Japan and Korea can eat food waste as long as it’s sterilized, and it works. Why can’t pigs in Europe do the same?