Sustainability, locally sourced foods and children’s nutrition top the list of emerging trends in 2011.
We’re hearing a lot about the rapid pace of change with technology and the internet these days.
But if you’re a leisure marketing specialist competing in the hospitality industry, you’re also seeing culinary trends evolve at an unprecedented pace.
Recently, NRA asked 1,527 chefs from the American Culinary Federation to name the top trends in culinary science in the coming year.
Chefs see local, sustainable, nutritionally balanced foods sharing the spotlight.
Other interesting themes you can expect to see at the nearly one million American restaurants include gluten-free and allergy-free foods, offering smaller portions for lower prices and ethnic-inspired breakfast items.
The Top 20 Culinary Trends for 2011:
- Locally sourced meats and seafood
- Locally grown produce
- Nutritionally balanced children’s dishes
- “Hyper local,” such as restaurants with their own gardens and chefs who do their own butchering.
- Children’s nutrition
- Sustainable seafood
- Gluten-free food and being food allergy conscious
- Simplicity/back to basics
- Farm/estate-branded ingredients
- Micro-distilled/artisan liquor
- Locally produced wine and beer
- Smaller portions for smaller prices
- Organic produce
- “Culinary” cocktails, for example ones that have savory or fresh ingredients
- Newly fabricated cuts of meat such as the pork flat iron and the beef petit tender
- Fruit and vegetables as children’s side items
- Ethnic-inspired breakfast items, such as Asian-flavored syrups, chorizo scrambled eggs and coconut milk pancakes
- Artisan cheeses
Survey respondents offered their top 3 strategies for prospering during difficult economic times:
- Simplifying menus to save on labor and food costs
- Offering value specials
- Increasing marketing efforts
American chefs also predicted the 3 hottest operational trends for 2011:
- Mobile food trucks and pop up restaurants
- Restaurants with gardens
- Social media marketing
When asked how restaurants could better promote nutrition, respondents offered these suggestions:
- 21% recommended creating diet conscious menu items
- 19% recommended more fresh produce options
- 17% advocated getting more involved in school nutrition and children’s education
What kinds of new requests are you getting from your dining guests? What changes are you making to keep up with these trends? Tell us about your experience.
You can read more about the survey here.