Ancient as the Hills, of course :)!
In June I had the fun fortune to accompany one of my design clients to the New York Summer Fancy Food Show; a trade show that has been bringing new and seasoned food entrepreneurs/companies together with buyers and distributors to “share new consumer trends and tastes of tomorrow for over 60 years”.
Fancy Food Show Adventures
To give you an idea why, when you first arrive and register, you’re given a grab bag, so that as you go from booth to booth trying new products and hearing about a company’s story and product lines, you have a place to put the ton of samples you’re given to take home. Luckily the sweet, salty and everything in between is sprinkled throughout the show….so you don’t really overdose on sugar like on Halloween….but you definitely get to a point where you’re sampled out.
From those shows in the late 1980’s- early 1990’s, I remember meeting Ben & Jerry before they were big-time BEN & JERRY’S—Chunky Monkey was all the rage at one of those shows. I also remember when Baboli’s was introducing for the first time ever, shelf-stable, ready-made pizza crusts + sauce…what an amazing invention. And I clearly remember when the Gardetto Family’s snack mix was the new kid on the block and was seen as innovative and new.
It’s really amazing to see how company’s evolve overtime…so many start from humble beginnings and as they grow and hit shelves in the mainstream market, new customers just see them as a new brand they can come to rely on being there week after week, not always realizing the passion, drive and dedication it took to get those brands actually on those shelves.
Friends in 2018, get ready for Turmeric…everything!
This year the rage was Turmeric everything :). This ancient herb that’s literally as old as the hills and has been used in Asia for thousands of years, is now the new kid on the block in mainstream, western food industry. There was turmeric tea, turmeric kombucha, turmeric fizzes, golden lattes, turmeric popcorn, turmeric lentil chips, turmeric potato chips…let’s just say, turmeric is going to be everywhere in 2018. I love that this wonder herb is finally being given it’s long overdue recognition it deserves. I wrote a blog post back in 2012 on the amazing benefits of it…you can read about here if you’d like: Turmeric: a wonder herb.
My favorite turmeric based product was Rishi Tea’s new Craft Brews. They have currently have two flavors: Runner’s High and Sparkling Turmeric. The Sparkling Turmeric was my favorite!!! This carbonated tea consists of turmeric, saffron, lemongrass and kaffir lime with no added sugar. It was DELICIOUS! There goal is to reach their traditional tea drinkers at places like gyms, restaurants and cafes so that can sell this on tap, by the glassful. It’s such great nonalcoholic alternative to traditional happy hour beverages.
And the other ongoing trend that I noticed was that the gluten-free market is only getting stronger. As you can guess, I was happy to see the variety and innovation in this area, since for so many of us, being gluten-free is not a diet fad, but truly an allergy. I love that my favorite vegan ice cream brand, Coconut Bliss is coming out with gluten-free, vegan ice cream sandwiches 🙂 —how awesome is that!
And although I’m a natural foods foodie at heart :), I was attending from the perspective of a graphic designer. I loved seeing all the bold colors, great imagery and creative ways company’s are now using real estate on their packaging to share their story. Because at the end of the day, whether you’re packaging up food, a service or a candle….the packaging is the first point of contact for the consumer/client. And considering how overcrowded various market places can feel these days…you only have so many seconds to make your first impressions count.
There are so many amazingly creative, courageous and innovative food entrepreneurs out there doing some amazing stuff. My hat goes off to them all! Here’s to delicious food, beautiful design and fun adventures!
Lots of love,
p.s. I still take on a handful of design clients a quarter, if you or someone you know needs some work, please feel free to reach out and get a quote!