Consumers are constantly looking for new and exciting food innovations. As explored in the Bord Bia Shared Experiences consumer lifestyle trend, people are looking to brands for fun and novel creations, new sensations and products that create moments that can be shared with family and friends both in real life and, sometimes more importantly, with their online social circle as well. Innovations in taste and vibrant use of colour have been the main way brands have used to appeal to these consumers, but have other senses been neglected in favour of taste and sight?
In Mintel’s report on Global Food and Drink Trends 2018, they predict that the sense of touch will come increasingly to the forefront, as food and drink brands launch more products based around innovations in texture. They state that ‘texture is the next facet of formulation that can be leveraged to provide consumers with interactive and documentation worthy experiences.’ Asia has led the way with these types of products, but Europe is overtaking in terms of launches of new products that include descriptions of texture. Their research does suggest there is consumer appetite for these products as well, as 37% of Spanish, 36% of Polish, and 22% of German and Italian consumers say they are open to trying food and drink with unusual textures.
Some examples of products they have seen that play on this trend are Oreo’s Firework Oreo, that contains popping candy within their iconic biscuit, and the new Fanta Jelly, that blends the original Fanta soft drink with ‘juicy liquid jelly pieces’, and has been launched in Australia as part of their new sensory range.