For the fourth year, the global buyers at Whole Foods have released their predictions for the coming year.
Jackfruit, monk fruit, guava, dragon fruit and passionfruit are some of the Pacific Rim flavors that Whole Foods thinks will be big in the next year, but so are shelf-stable probiotics found in foods such as granola, cereal bars and even non-edible things, such as sunscreen and cleaners.
I'd never heard of the term "phat fats," but that's the term Whole Foods is using for trendy, fatty foods, such as butter coffee, coconut-butter filled chocolates, ghee-seasoned popcorn and coconut cashew "yogurt."
Thanks to the increased awareness and interest in CBD products, hemp products are going to have a big year, the experts predicted, including baby hemp leaves in the microgreens section of the store.
Faux meat snacks , including vegan "pork" rinds and no-meat "beef" jerky, are on the rise, and so is eco-conscious packaging, including multi-use packaging and reusable straws, the report says.
In a category they call trailblazing frozen treats, customers will find Thai ice cream, mochi, coconut soft serve, boozy ice pops and even hummus- or avocado-based ice cream. Thanks to the popularity of seaweed snacks, Whole Foods experts say we'll be seeing more marine munchies, such as puffed snacks made from water lily seeds, crispy snackable salmon skins and kelp jerkies.
Speaking of snacks, keep and eye out for high-end snack options, such as a charcuterie or cheese board for one or mini baguettes with prosciutto and aged mozzarella.
And finally, Whole Foods notes that customers are increasingly seeking food products that empower. That might mean a company that has an open hiring model or uses ingredients from source companies owned by women or minorities.
The Supermarket Guru Phil Lempert says that the biggest trend Whole Foods overlooked on its list this year is how, after the Amazon merger, the companies "have awaken a previously staid industry and revitalized it as chains both large and small are changing the way they look at grocery," he wrote today. "Amazon/Whole Foods has also attracted new talent, some from Ivy League schools, who might never have thought about a career in grocery and led other grocers on the same path. For me one of the biggest trends for 2019 will be to watch where Amazon/Whole Foods leads us next."