Ingredion Inc., Westchester, IL, recently published global texture and taste trends that are shaping the future of product development through the company’s Idea Labs CULINOLOGY group. The trends identified stem from North and South America, Europe, Asia and Australasia, and capture the emerging food texture trends in each region.

Ingredion initiated the research project to identify the texture and taste trends from around the world to provide new ideas and fresh concepts to food and beverage manufacturers aiming to appeal to evolving demographics. Each of the company’s regional culinologists researched and shared traditional texture trends and how they have shaped the eating culture in each region.

Tradition and trends were taken into consideration to better map where the textures originated and how they play into the future of global food culture. With these insights in hand, the team then collected information on eating habits and trends, including the hottest new flavors and combinations. An interesting mix of information was gathered and key taste and texture trends emerged including:

  • North America: Millennial Fusion, Texture and Flavor Mash-Ups, and Gluten-Free
  • South America: Comfort Food and Indigenous Ingredients
  • Europe: Provenance, Millennial Fusion, Comfort Food and Artisanal
  • Asia: Curries, Food Safety and Ethical Sourcing, Local Food Flavors
  • Australia: Indigenous Ingredients, Provenance

“As a global team, we wanted to investigate the textures and flavors that people are drawn to and prefer,” says Janet Carver, CULINOLOGY group manager at Ingredion. “Mouth behavior studies also show that the way food feels and sounds when we eat it is just as important as how it tastes—it’s a symphony of the mind and senses that creates our likes and dislikes and foods to which we are consistently drawn.”

According to Ingredion, the overlap and globalization of the foods consumers eat is becoming more evident each year, as can be seen with new flavor forecasts and the launch of new food products from around the world. Diverse global textures are showing the same convergence, and how and what consumers eat is becoming more and more global and “fused” each day. As more ingredients become available to a region—and that culture adopts that food/ingredient as their own—a new wave of global food culture will be underway.