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Eight flavours for 2016

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Eight flavours for 2016

February 02
11:48 2016

coconut-chutney-3Using a combination of in-depth, formal and grassroots market research initiatives, Sensient Flavors has identified what it believes are eight up-and-coming flavour trends for 2016.

After analysing market shifts and U.S. consumer behaviour, Sensient predicts the following flavours will be on the rise:

Chamoy

A mash-up of flavours that combines the smoky heat of ancho chilies with apricot preserves, lime juice, salt and sugar. Consumers’ renewed interest in revisiting classics, updated with an artisanal emphasis, takes this flavour to a new level. Most consumers are familiar with a commercial version of Chamoy sauce popular in Mexican cuisine that is sour and flat. We have taken this flavour back to its roots and given it the attention, complexity and homemade touch that made it a staple South-of-the-border condiment.

Charred Coconut

The coconut has become as ubiquitous as the apple; consumers love its tropical, creamy sweetness. Sensient has combined that with another flavour that is becoming a pillar of American cuisine: smoke. In fact, in this flavour the coconut is placed much closer to the flame — roasted.

Honeyed Evergreen

Tree is the new seed. In this flavour trend, the crisp, unpretentious pine is softened by honey instead of sap as consumers start incorporating nature back into their daily lives. Bark, roots, leaves will all come back on the scene in a big way.

Overripe Melon

As focus on food waste comes front and centre, it is beginning to impact the flavour world. This flavour appreciates the melon, which is so often served under-ripe and tossed when it is truly ripe and most flavourful. The green notes mix with fermentation and therefore lend a slight alcohol scent and flavour.

Pandan

As an increasingly connected world increases consumers’ access to exotic ingredients, people are keen to find something new that jibes with the current American palate. This green, nutty and almost bready southeast Asian staple is a fun new ingredient that can be incorporated into any dish.

Preserved Cherry Blossom

Americans are into pickling, preserving, curing, brining and other methods for making seasonal ingredients last all year. The notoriously short cherry blossom season is a global sensation, making the floral, fruity cherry blossom the perfect candidate for this treatment.

Sassafras Root

This is a common ingredient in so many products, yet most people aren’t sure what it tastes like. This plant’s flavour falls somewhere between a medicinal tonic and root beer. With consumers’ increased interest in bitters, roots and craft sodas, this flavour is sure to get them talking.

Urfa Chile

From time to time, you come across something that is so luxe, it makes you feel special when you use it. This is one of those things. The rich, raisin-y, chocolate taste of this chile has notes of tobacco and wine. This is a standout in a chile category that is saturated.

The consumer insights were developed utilizing Sensient’s Trends to Taste¡ program, a proprietary predictive process that the company claims filters trends from the broad, consumer, macro level down to finished concepts that best demonstrate each flavour profile.

Throughout the year, Sensient’s team of marketing, R&D and sales professionals collect information through five strategic channels: market excursions, custom and syndicated research, trade shows and publications, word of mouth and social media. The resulting data is analysed utilising deep immersion techniques to identify key insights, flavour profiles and concepts to share with customers. This year’ program included an addition of an urban foraging expedition as well as trend endorsement by Mintel.

“The 2016 Trends to Taste flavour predictions represent a larger, overarching shift in consumer thinking, ¨ said Lauren Williams, marketing manager, Sensient Flavours. “No longer overwhelmed by the amount of information and options that come with increased interconnectivity, consumers are increasingly interested in finding balance and personal fit in their lives, and these trends are represent different aspects of that transformation.¨

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