What's going to be the next ethnic food hit? ~ Brand Mix

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

What's going to be the next ethnic food hit?

I missed the Winter Fancy Food Show in San Francisco this year. As 1,300 exhibitors from 32 countries showed and sampled their 80,000 products to 17,000 attendees, I was off to India. But Andy Whitman of 2x Consumer Products was there and produced his usual excellent summary of emerging trends.

What he saw amid the sea of chocolates, olives and cheeses was the possible emergence of lesser know ethnic foods to take the place of those like Japanese, Thai and Indian that have become more mainstream.

As he says: "The 'big three of ethnic foods' Italian, Mexican and Chinese – are so broadly consumed they’re really American food. The next most popular ethnic foods – including Japanese, Thai, Indian, Mediterranean and others – have already begun their 'mainstreamization' as a result of the plethora of authentic restaurants, Americanized offerings at casual dining like TGI Friday’s and Cheesecake Factory and of brands like Thai Kitchen and Marrakesh Express companies. With ethnic foods consistently other grocery products and maintaining growth in softer economic times ... lesser known ethnic foods from
of the globe are likely to emerge as 'the next wave'."

I think that's right. Part of the attraction for ethnic foods is that they are not everyday, not the type of thing you'd find in TGIF. There's a fashion element. Once your mother-in-law is wearing Uggs, it's time to stop wearing them (if it ever was).

Which contrivance brings us to just one of the candidates that Andy discovered at the show that may benefit from this search for the new ethnic foods. It's Mother in Law's Kimchi and apparently it's really good (a thumbs-up from the New York Times as well). The product is based on an original recipe from founder Lauren Chun's inlaws' Jang Mo Gip restaurant in Garden Grove, CA.

Other products identified by Andy also representing this new trend: Afghan Bolani and Fava Dip, based on a popular Egyptian dish.

1 comment:

Flexible Packaging Companies said...

Thank you for all the great posts from last year! I look forward to reading your blog, because they are always full of information that I can put to use. Thank you again, and God bless you in 2010.

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