Beverage Trends: Culinary Trend Mapping Report

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Published Sep 24, 2009 | 71 Pages | Pub ID: LA2444071

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The beverage market has always been large and competitive. But a scene that 15 years ago was dominated by soda, juice, milk, coffee and tea is now splintering into numerous smaller niches, and as a result, consumers are able to find beverages to meet their specific needs. This is evidenced by tremendous industry growth.

So just what kind of overarching needs are consumers looking to satisfy from beverages today? We’ve identified two primary and several secondary benefit drivers propelling the trends covered in this report: Better-for-you, including functional, nutritional, and holistic wellness, and quality quest, including artisan-made, and retro/nostalgic.

With those drivers in mind, we found exciting beverages at all five stages of the Trend Map:

  • Stage 1
    • New Cocktails are experiencing a renaissance as they connect to consumer interests in retro experiences.
    • Exotic Functional Flavors: which superfruit flavors will be the pomegranate and goji berry of tomorrow?
  • Stage 2
    • Eastern Wisdom: traditional ingredients from Asia are crossing over from food to drinks, bestowing wellness properties.
  • Stage 3
    • Coconut Water: nutrient-packed, it appeals to diverse demographics.
    • 21st Century Sodas are wowing the market.
  • Stage 4
    • Kids’ Functionals promise a host of benefits such as brain development, stress relief, satiety, immunity, and more
  • Stage 5
    • Stevia has been approved for use in beverages, and beverage manufacturers have moved swiftly to get stevia-sweetened drinks to market.

The potential market for today’s new beverages is a large one, with diverse groups ranging from active Baby Boomers to savvy Gen X parents to youthful Gen Yers looking for healthful, exciting and unique drinks. Because of this diversity in demographics and psychographics, the beverage offerings are expanding, and we believe the varied needs of consumers make it an arena with plenty of room for growth and innovation.

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The Culinary Trend Mapping Report is an indispensable tool for those whose job it is to stay abreast of what's hot - or what will be - in the food world!

Using the Center for Culinary Development’s (CCD) signature Trend Mapping technique, a validated method identifying which culinary trends are “gaining traction” and which are simply flashes in the pan, each report concentrates on a theme, or trend, that is affecting the food industry, and then looks at the emerging and established ingredients, cooking styles and products along the Trend Map that are driving this theme.

Each report is a 75+ page journal packed with trends, data, strategies and insights on the food industry that simply aren't available anywhere else.

Each Issue of the Culinary Trends Mapping Report

  • Identifies the maturity level of foods and ingredients according to CCD’s unique, proprietary 5-stage trend mapping process.
  • Concentrates on a theme that is affecting the food industry, and then looks at the emerging and established trends along the Trend Map that affect—or are affected by—this theme.
  • Delves into these trends and what they mean for you and the manufacturing, retailing, and foodservice industries.
  • Gives strategic insight into how consumers are thinking of and reacting to new foods and ingredients.
  • Provides business know-how regarding opportunities, challenges, and ways to implement current trends into foodservice, retail, and packaged goods operations.
  • Presents a feature interview with a member chef from CCD’s exclusive 80+ member Chefs’ Council that offers expert analysis and his or her perspective on a specific trend.

Trend Mapping

Trend Mapping is guided by the premise that major food trends pass through five distinct stages on their way to the mainstream:

  • Stage 1: The ingredient, dish and/or cooking technique appears at upscale dining establishments, ethnic and popular independent restaurants.
  • Stage 2: The item is featured in specialty consumer-oriented food magazines, such as Gourmet and Bon Appetit plus retail stores such as Sur La Table that target culinary professionals and serious home cooks.
  • Stage 3: The item begins to appear in mainstream chain restaurants -- Applebee's or Chili's --as well as retail stores such as Williams-Sonoma that target recreational cooks.
  • Stage 4: Publications such as Family Circle and Better Homes and Gardens pick up the buzz.
  • Stage 5: Finally, the trend makes its way to quick service restaurant menus and is either starting to appear or is having increased presence on grocery store shelves.


Published bimonthly, the Culinary Trend Mapping Report is available for purchase as a single issue or a six-issue subscription.

Executive Summary
Why Beverages? — Kimberly Egan
Executive Summary

Trend Summary
Stage 1 -
Exotic Functional Flavors
Stage 2 -
Eastern Wisdom
Stage 3 -
Coconut Water
21st Century Sodas
Stage 4 -
Kids’ Functionals
Stage 5 -

Chef Speak: CCD Chefs’ Council Voices
Yanni Kehagiaras: The Gospel of Cocktails

Strategic Implications
Strategic Opportunities for Beverage Trends

Source List