First and foremost, it's clear that simplicity, versatility, escapism and resourcefulness will continue to be key themes in the food industry. With the ongoing challenges of inflation, climate change and global tensions, consumers are looking for ways to simplify their lives and find joy in the little things. This means that we can expect to see an increase in products that are easy to use, adaptable to a variety of situations, and provide a sense of escape or comfort.
To meet this demand, we'll likely see more high-end Jell-O shots, bright naturally colored fare, and packaging that evokes the nostalgia of the 1970s. These fun and playful items will provide a welcome respite from the stresses of everyday life and offer a chance to indulge in a little whimsy.
In addition to seeking out fun and novelty, consumers will also continue to look for food and drinks that make them feel healthier. With the pandemic continuing to dominate headlines and concerns about health at an all-time high, people will be looking for ways to boost their immune systems and support their overall wellbeing. This means that we'll see an even greater proliferation of products that are marketed as being good for you, including functional ingredients and immune-boosting foods.
Another trend that we can expect to see in 2023 is the continued embrace of bracing marine flavors. Coastal cocktails garnished with crab claws and oysters have already gained popularity, and this trend is likely to continue with the rise of sea vegetables like kelp and sea creatures like uni. These flavors provide a fresh and invigorating twist on traditional cocktail and appetizer offerings and are a perfect way to add a touch of the seaside to your menu.
One thing that's not going away anytime soon is the focus on sustainability and the environment. While the term "climatarian" may be so 2022, the trend towards regenivore eating will only continue to grow. This new way of eating is not just about preserving what we have, but actively healing the planet through carbon-reducing agriculture, more rigorous animal welfare policies, and equitable treatment of the people who grow and process our food. Packaging will also play a key role in this trend, with more and more companies looking for ways to reduce waste and make their products more environmentally friendly.
One unexpected trend that we're predicting will take off in 2023 is the rise of chicken skins. While they've been trying to elbow out chicharrones for a while now, this could be the year that crispy chicken skins truly take off. With the popularity of fried chicken at an all-time high and rising chicken prices prompting chefs to get creative with how they use every part of the bird, we can expect to see chicken skins used in a variety of creative ways. Whether they're the base for nachos at pop-ups, sauced and spiced as appetizers, or used as toupées for roasts, chicken skins are sure to be a hit with consumers who love the crunchy texture and the sense of indulgence that they provide.
Japanese food and its fusion with other cuisines will also continue to be a major trend in 2023. As chefs throughout the world, many of them of Japanese descent, embrace the flavors and techniques of Japanese cooking, we'll see an increase in dishes that blend Japanese ingredients with the flavors of other cuisines. This is already happening with popular trends like itameshi (Japanese-Italian fusion) and Nikkei (Peruvian-Japanese fusion), and we can expect to see even more exciting and innovative combinations in the coming year.
Plant-based meat alternatives will also continue to grow in popularity, with a focus on taste and texture. As consumers become more aware of the environmental and health benefits of plant-based protein, we'll see an increase in products that are designed to closely mimic the taste and feel of meat, making it easier for people to make the switch.
Finally, vegetables will continue to be a focus in cooking, with chefs finding more and more creative ways to present them in their dishes. Whether it's through the use of innovative cooking techniques or the incorporation of unusual and exotic vegetables, we can expect to see a continuation of the "vegetable-forward" trend that has been gaining momentum in recent years.
In summary, the food trends of 2023 are all about simplicity, fun, health, and sustainability. Whether it's through the use of bold and flavorful ingredients, the incorporation of eco-friendly practices, or the embrace of plant-based alternatives, there are plenty of exciting developments to look forward to in the coming year.