Big Flavor Trends of 2022 Include Exotic Spices and Healthy Choices

As many countries shed the lockdown restrictions of the past two years, diners are venturing out to eat, drink, and socialize once more in a restaurant setting. Months of monotonous meals have encouraged consumers to seek foods that offer exciting new flavor combinations. At the same time, health-conscious eating is rising in popularity, with over 30% of Americans self-identifying as ‘mostly vegetarian’ in 2021.
How the Pandemic Shaped Consumer Flavor Choices
The Covid-19 epidemic shed a global light on consumer attitudes towards physical health and how lifestyle choices directly impact well-being. According to the International Food Information Council, 54% of US consumers said they cared more about their health in 2020 than in 2010. Many leading American chefs have predicted an increase in plant-based eating and a preference for fresh, fruity flavors over rich dishes.
Industry leaders expect a rising trend in citrus flavors, such as lemon, orange, yuzu, and kumquat, in 2022. Many consumers associate these fruits with vitamin C and its immune-boosting qualities, which a lack of became a constant concern during the health crisis. Ginger is also expected to top the consumer favorites list this year, praised as an antioxidant that helps ward off infections and disease.
The rise of green drinks packed with botanical flavors including sage, basil, and elderflower is also expected to continue in 2022, with many consumers choosing natural tastes over their synthetic alternatives. Gut health awareness will also increase in 2022, with drinks such as Kombucha popularizing herbal, floral, and earthy tastes.
How Consumers Use Flavor to Escape to Exotic Destinations
Many Americans experimented with cooking during quarantine, trying new flavors, and learning how to make dishes from around the world. The taste for global flavors is predicted to increase during 2022 as many people face extended travel bans that inhibit international trips and exotic dining.
Recent food trend reports expect flavors from Asia, Africa, Latin America, and the Middle East to dominate the food industry this year. Consumers have shown increased interest in tangy and spicy flavors, such as wasabi, sriracha, and dragon fruit, and a growing preference for adventurous sweet and salty pairings reminiscent of Chinese and Southeast Asian cuisine.
Food industry studies suggest that consumers also hope to satisfy adventurous palates with unique flavor fusions that create exciting new taste profiles. Combining American favorites with ethnic flavors may result in refreshing food and beverage ranges that consumers will likely enjoy. This trend affects beverage consumption most, with unusual hybrids of fruit juice, lemonade, and herbal extracts in the leading position.
Consumers are expected to turn towards fresh, natural flavors in 2022 in response to the need for improved eating and drinking habits to support their physical health. Industry leaders also predict that spicy, tangy flavors inspired by exotic global cuisines will influence flavor trends this year.
Advanced Biotech supplies an extensive range of premium food and beverage flavorings, including the top flavors for 2022. Please contact us for more information.