2024 Food Trends We’re Ready For

2024 Food Trends We’re Ready For

With more than five decades of global food processing industry experience under our belts, we know one thing for sure: the food industry constantly evolves and new trends emerge regularly.

But as a new year approaches fast, it’s time to take our annual look at some of the predictions around food trends we (might) need to be prepared for in 2024. Here are a few of the anticipated food trends we’re ready to help North America’s most innovative food brands tackle.

1)  Putting more plants into plant-based foods

Whole Foods predicts that we’ll see our old pal plants return to the plant-based choices that have seen soaring popularity in recent years. From alternative meats to plant-based dairy choices, the continual push for plant-based foods and clean labels will collide with this trend. Complex (a.k.a. long ingredient lists) meat and dairy alternatives are expected to take a back seat to veggie-forward options in 2024. The Trends Council at Whole Foods anticipates that we’ll see protein-forward plant ingredients like walnuts, tempeh, mushrooms, and legumes take a more prominent stage in our plant-based choices.

We’re ready. We’ve spent decades building and sourcing food processing equipment that helps producers create healthier prepared foods. The revolutionary DCN Jet Cook system has been aiding producers in the reduction of fats, sodium, and other less-healthy additives for years. Its unique steam-based technology allows for rapid heating and cooking while still maintaining particulate integrity when needed. Two-ingredient dairy alternatives? The DCN Jet Cook System can handle it with ease. See the DCN Jet Cook System being used to produce oat milk.

2)  Move over avocado oil, keto diets, and celery juice – it’s buckwheat’s turn

Every year seems to be marked with a most-influential ingredient and Whole Foods is predicting that it might just be buckwheat in 2024. Perhaps we can credit the 2020 trend to focus more on regenerative agriculture for this one? Buckwheat is a popular cover crop used to promote soil health and lucky for all of us – it’s also a naturally gluten-free superfood. While the buckwheat standbys will certainly stay on the shelf (here’s looking at you buckwheat pancakes and soba noodles) the Whole Foods Trends Council says we might see it in more unexpected places like plant-based milk alternatives.

Whether you need help cooking those buckwheat soba noodles to be used in a refrigerated or frozen ready-meal or you’re poised to lead the buckwheat innovation pack with things like buckwheat milk – we’ve got a tested solution for your processing needs. Have a look at the Cook Quench Chill Adapt’s ingenuity when it comes to cooking gluten-free pasta.

a variety of dried gluten and grain free pastas on a white marble countertop with a brown craft paper tag next to them that reads 'gluten free pasta' makes up the background. There is a navy blue overlay with a headline that reads 'Why the CQC Adapt is an Ideal fit for the Industrial Cooking of Gluten Free Pasta'. This headline is below the DC Norris North America logo
3)  Water stewardship

Moving towards sustainability and finding ways to lessen environmental impacts have long been on the annual food trend predictions list. This year, the focus narrows in on water stewardship. Brands are predicted to endeavor for regenerative organic certification (which requires soil health improvement that enables water conservation for growers), to continue innovating products to use less water in their production, and inspire less water consumption when they’re used by consumers (think shampoo bars, laundry detergent sheets, flavor concentrates, and even new water brands that use water from fruit by-products).

All of the production equipment and systems in our portfolio from our CIP systems to sous vide, are helping food producers do more with less (water, electricity, ingredient waste, labor). We’re fully in support of helping brands feed North America and helping them do it in a way that ensures we’ll be worrying about feeding our citizens for generations ahead. To talk more about the specific water conservation benefits of any of the equipment in our portfolio, or to discuss the design of a more efficient manufacturing process, reach out to our skilled team of food processing engineers.

You can read the rest of the forecasted food trends for 2024 by Whole Foods here: https://media.wholefoodsmarket.com/whole-foods-market-forecasts-top-10-food-trends-for-2024/

The food industry is always changing, and it will be exciting to see what the future holds. We’re ready to help you lead the continually evolving North American food market. Our newly expanded portfolio goes further to help you continually innovate to meet the changing tastes and demands of today’s consumers.

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