CGA recently attended the London Food Tech Week and saw first-hand how technology is transforming the food and drink ecosystem. Here are five of my top takeaways from the event.
1. Plant-based eating
At the start of 2019, two thirds (67%) of respondents to CGA’s Business Leaders’ Survey tipped veganism as a key trend to follow—and halfway through the year, interest shows no sign of slowing. Technology is fuelling the evolution of the trend, though new foods like plant-based ‘pork’ Omnipork, a seaweed-based shrimp alternative from New Wave and algae-based Omega 3 supplements from Simris.
2. Body-responsive food
Tech is also helping to fast track the development of food and drink that plays to the big trend for healthier, body-friendly eating. London Food Tech Week showcased innovations like Mela, a supplier of chocolates with bacterial cocktails, probiotic drinks from Perkii, and fermentation-based producer Motif.
3. Better sustainability
With BrandTrack data showing that four in five (79%) consumers consider environmentally-friendly packaging to be important in the out of home venues they visit, pressure is mounting on brands to show they care about sustainability. Technology can help to ease the burden, via things like compostable packaging from the likes of TIPA, avocado stone-based cutlery and straws from Biofase, and coffee-waste-to-biofuel converter BioBean.
4. New spirits
CGA’s Business Leaders’ Survey found two in five (41%) bosses tipping low and no-alcohol drinks as a big trend at the start of 2019—and no-alcohol gin, vodka and rum brands like Stryyk are likely to keep the movement going. Elsewhere in the drinks market, molecular spirits could be one of the next big things, with new scientific techniques from Endless West producing whiskey without the need for ageing or barreling.
5. Interactive labels
With its technology improving, Augmented Reality is reaching the mainstream, and suppliers like MCC are starting to roll it out on labels. Beer brands including BrewDog have been among the early adopters, using interactive labels to tell their stories.
London Food Tech Week was curated by Yfood. Click here for more about the event.