Whole Foods Market has announced its top 10 food trends for 2022, but this year its annual prediction comes with a twist: a consumer box of trend-setting products.
Called the Trends Discovery Box, the curated assortment includes 10 products that represent each of the trends in the forecast, Austin, Texas-based Whole Foods said Monday. Available online at wfmtrythetrends.com, the limited-time box costs $30 and is valued at over $50, according to the retailer.
Each year, a Trends Council of more than 50 Whole Foods staff — including local foragers, regional and global buyers, and culinary experts — make trend predictions based on their decades experience and expertise in product sourcing and study of consumer preferences, along with in-depth workshops in emerging and current brands.
Food trends for 2022, Whole Foods said, include ultra-urban farming (fresh produce grown in indoor, vertical farms), a tart-and-sour fruit called yuzu (popping up in condiments, dressings and drinks), “reducetarianism” (plant-curious eaters not ready to give up meat and dairy entirely), hibiscus (a sweet and tart flavor used increasingly in fruit spreads, yogurt and other foods), “buzz-less spirits” (nonalcoholic liquors and cocktails), sustainably raised grains such as kernza (found in various foods and beverages), sunflower seeds (used in a rising number of foods like crackers, ice cream and creamy cheeses), the herb moringa (in powder form for smoothies, sauces and baked goods), “functional fizz” (flavorful bubbly drinks with beneficial ingredients such as pre- and probiotics and botanicals), and the spice turmeric (now showing up in packaged foods such as cereal, sauerkraut and plant-based ice cream).
“Last year, we saw tremendous pandemic-related shifts in grocery buying habits as the world adjusted to spending more time at home,” Sonya Gafsi Oblisk, chief marketing officer at Whole Foods, said in a statement. “As the food industry slowly adjusts to a new normal, we expect to see consumers prioritize food and drink products that deliver additional benefits — like functional sodas and tonics — and products that support their sense of well-being, like urban garden greens and products grown with farming processes that help address soil health.”
The Trends Discovery Box marks the first time a collection of products is being offered in the seven years of the Top 10 Food Trends outlook, Whole Foods noted. Products in the box and their respective trends include the following: Poppi Strawberry Lemon Prebiotic Soda (functional fizz), Fix & Fogg Oaty Nut Butter (sunflower seeds), Greenbar Distillery Lavender Bitters & Soda Non-Alcoholic Cocktail (buzz-less spirits), Ruby Hibiscus Unsweetened Water (hibiscus), Kuli Kuli Daily Green Boost with Moringa & Supergreens (moringa), EPIC Provisions 100% Grass-Fed Bison, Uncured Bacon and Cranberry Bar (reducetarianism), Annie's Organic Shells & White Cheddar with Whole Grains (sustainable grains), 365 by Whole Foods Market Golden Chai Granola (turmeric), Acid League Pink Peppercorn Honey Yuzu Vinaigrette (yuzu), and Gotham Greens Salad Toppers Seeds (ultra-urban farming). The box also includes a coupon for a free Gotham Greens product at Whole Foods.
“We look forward to watching these trends take form in grocery aisles and on our plates in 2022,” Oblisk added.
Whole Foods Market’s top food trends for 2021 included foods for well-being, epic breakfasts, back to basics, coffee-flavored foods, more variety in baby food, “upcycled foods” reducing food waste, greater variety of food oils (e.g. walnut, pumpkin seed, sunflower seed), alcoholic kombucha, chickpeas, and fruit and vegetable jerky.
A subsidiary of Amazon, Whole Foods operates 506 U.S. stores in 43 states.