Tempo is a regular at the annual Summer Fancy Food Show where we often get our inspiration for food marketing. Partner Angela Cason gave a speech on “Mobile and the Modern Consumer,” which you can view here. We also visited our clients’ booths and sampled incredible treats from around the world (it’s a tough job, but Tempo’s got to do it.)
Some of the culinary trends we noticed at the show:
1. CRAZY FOR COCONUT – If 2011 was the year of gluten-free, 2012 is the year of the coconut. The range on display proved that the trend goes further than Rihanna sipping coconut water. Coconut caramels abounded and Danielle Coconut Chips turned coconuts into a crunchier snack. Did you know that you can use coconut products instead of oil and butter? Kelapo makes a coconut oil, spray, and baking sticks that you can use to amp up the flavor of baked goods (they even made a delicious chocolate cake to prove it!)
2. NEAT MEATS – In addition to the usual charcuterie board items, we saw a lot of new premium meat products. Gary West Artisan Smoked Meats makes “Original Steak Strips” from meat smoked over pear wood chips (a sofi finalist). D’Artagnan’s premium chorizo, made with lean heritage pork, was superb.
3. CRISPY DESSERTS– If you like your chocolate chip cookies on the crispy side, you’ll love cookies in a crisp form. HannahMax launched a Crispy Cookie Chip at the show, while Gabriella’s Cookie Chips makes a bite-sized version. Even more creative were the brownie chips, offered by both Sheila G.’s Brownie Brittle and Seth Greenberg’s Brownie Crunch. This trend begs the question: if they’re meant to be eaten like chips, can we have the whole bag?
4. COOL DRINKS – While we always kept our eyes peeled for a good wine table, the show was filled with more unusual sips. The guys from Hi Ball Energy had a great, all-natural energy booster – and we sampled Kingfisher Beer, an Indian beer now sold in 55 countries. We also loved Crio, a 100% cacao drink that perks you up like caffeine, but without the jag or the lag. Do they make that for Keurig machines yet?
Noticeably Absent: Bacon. We didn’t see as many bacon products as in year’s past, but those present made the most of the salty/sweet magic bacon works in desserts and candy. Queen City Cookies’ Bacon Schnecken was brutally addictive. One bite of that, and we were ready to fall in love all over again.
What will we see in 2013?
Bring on the bacon coconut brownie crisps.