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As we being a new year, industry leaders predict trends. So, what is in store for food in 2018?

Mindfulness

The term “mindfulness” can be heard from your office to your gym and anywhere in between. It is defined as the quality or state of being conscious or aware. How does this align with food trends? Forbes explains that Mindfulness reflects a new consumer attitude, mostly led by millennials, to truly understand everything possible about a particular food or beverage and then support the company, whether it be a brand or a retailer, by aligning with its values and supporting it with purchases.

Unique Seasonings

The use of unique seasoning will boom in 2018 and their consumption will no longer be an experience solely for the courageous.

According to Forbes, we look at food differently nowadays. The use of, say, ants that taste like lemongrass, or bark with a bitter coffee scent, will only further the authenticity of a dish. Look for these unique seasonings on your restaurant plate in 2018.

Non-Alcoholic Drinks

The National Restaurant Association suggests that homemade/artisan soft drinks will be the biggest non-alcoholic drink trend and culinary cocktails (e.g. savory, fresh ingredients, herb-infused) will reign with alcoholic drinks, followed closely by locally produced spirits, wine, and beer.

Smarter Technology

According to Food Service Restaurant Magazine, Technology’s going to infiltrate full-service restaurants even more, according to Gary Stibel, NECG’s founder and CEO. “There are patrons who want to order a drink or pay without waiting for the server. It will be gradual, because technology on the table will offend some, but those who don’t have it, could lose a patron.” Restaurants will also need to focus on having loyalty programs that actually generate loyalty and aren’t just promotional.

2018 will see a shift in the food industry. Consumers are now more mindful of their food choices. Simultaneously, chefs and restaurants will offer more unique seasonings and non-alcoholic drinks. All of this is being done with a heightened focus on technology.