Food trends for 2013: Dining novelties to grace Australian plates

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 11th December 2012

One in four Australians change their food habits because of news coverage, according to public relations company Weber Shandwick’s annual food trend report, Food Forward 2013. The group predicts artisan supermarkets, Wagyu restaurants and sweet/savoury flavour combinations will be some of the biggest upcoming food trends.

The recently released Food Forward 2013 report reveals sentiment about Australian food culture from more than 1,000 consumers and leading taste-makers from around the country including food editors, chefs, food bloggers and nutritionists. The research revealed five trend clusters which are predicted to shape the 2013 food preference, purchase and consumption of Australia.

The survey also found that news coverage continues to be a major influence of consumer purchase behaviour, with 25 per cent of those surveyed changing their food habits as a result of what appeared in the media. Almost 45 per cent of Australians sought out cheaper food alternatives and 41 per cent paid more attention to healthier food choices due to media coverage regarding these issues. Further, 40 per cent purchased only Australian-made produce.

According to Weber Shandwick’s research, Australians can expect the following trends in 2013:

Artisan Supermarkets

The butcher, the baker, the candlestick maker; Woolworths and Coles are introducing bakeries, butcheries, sushi-chefs and pizzerias in various stores across the country, enabling consumers to personalise their food shopping like never before.

Familiar Dining Novelties  

Bigger kitchens and nostalgic menus will encapsulate restaurants trends in 2013, with unstructured menus making entrées and mains a thing of the past. This casualisation of the menu will also see the adoption children’s food for grown-ups and a growing number of food trucks on our streets.

International Flavour Duopoly

South American and Asian flavours will boom in Australia in 2013, with Korean, Wagyu and Peruvian restaurants; spicy food from northern China; and Kimchi, a fermented Korean dish made of vegetables, showcasing a wider range of flavours. Mexican foods and flavours will also continue to boom, becoming an essential part in any Aussie kitchen.

Basics Revival

Aussie consumers will go back to basics in the kitchen, breathing new life into staple ingredients.  Vegetables will become the centerpiece of Aussie meals; novel foods from nature, such as the Kakadu Plum and Warrigal Greens, will be gracing our plates; and we may even see a rise of edible insects like grasshoppers and locusts.

Flavour Loss, Flavour Gain

Natural sweet and savoury flavours will be combined to create new taste sensations for an evolving Aussie palate, with a growing desire to taste real flavours of food untarnished by excess sugar and salt.