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The flavour industry is one of the most dynamic, progressive trade areas in the world. This makes sense considering flavour development governs pretty much most of what we eat. From food to beverages to protein powders and other supplements, flavour is ever present and always evolving. To stay ahead of the pack, here are 5 new and emerging flavour trends that you should be on the lookout for for the 2015/2016 period.

1. Bitter & Burnt

People have always had a love hate relationship with bitter tastes, however as people get older, their palettes change. What was once considered gross, no longer holds the same face-scrunching reactions that accompanied the food. As we progress to 2016, food companies will be employing some slightly bitter taste sensations as a way to offset their salt reduction strategies. This is because bitterness creates a strong taste impact, which can mask the plainness of salt reduction and is perceived to be healthier than increasing the sweetness of foods. Think dark chocolate, purposely burnt and caramelised vegetables, grapefruit and citrus rinds. While you’re not going to see the bitter taste in all food products, expect to see more dark chocolate and coffee varieties in protein powders.

2. Sweet & Heat

Sweet and savoury snacks have been around for the last couple of years and have made their way from foods to popcorn, chips and everything in between. However, this taste sensation is slowly losing ground to spicier taste profiles. The rise of kimchi, ghost pepper and other spicy Thai and South American flavours have slowly been trending in food service areas and are bound to make it to the mainstream in terms of snacks. The benefits of spicy foods on fat metabolism have long been known with capsaicin a well studied compound to support fat loss. So go on, spice things up and get your tastebuds ready for the eventual arrival of hotter snacks. While spicy protein bars and protein chips are awhile off, the supplements industry is definitely looking into its possibility.

3. Ginger & Spice

Spices have always been popular, but ginger and more aromatic, winter spices such as cardamom, nutmeg and cloves are definitely getting a much bigger market share. Ginger in particular is growing in the supplement industry thanks to researched benefits for appetite suppression, weight loss, metabolism and testosterone support. Get ready to see more of ginger type compounds both in your foods, beverages and fat burners, pre workouts and natural test boosters.

4. Savoury Yoghurts

As we head into “Peak Greek”; the period where popularity of Greek yoghurt hits its heights before an eventual drop, companies are looking at different ways to market its potential and delay hitting the peak. Enter savoury yoghurts. While the idea of savoury yoghurts for many of us doesn’t really go beyond kebabs, lamb and tzatziki, niche companies are already adopting trends of creating savoury styles yoghurts using vegetables, legumes, grains, spices and antipasti ingredients. It’s a new way to create a protein packed snack and get a serving of your vegetables.

5. Desserts & Protein Powders

Supplement company’s are going beyond the usual chocolate, vanilla and strawberry flavours when it comes to releasing new protein powders. True innovators in the category are heading straight for popular desserts. So you can feel as though you’re truly satisfying your sweet tooth without the unnecessary carbs, fat and extra calories. Popular novel flavours to come out around 2015 include glazed donut, snickerdoodle, salted caramel and honeycomb variants. However, as we head into 2016, expect to see some of the following flavour influences in your protein powders:

  • Maple flavours
  • Nutty flavours such as almonds, pecans and pistachios
  • Cheesecake flavours
  • Burnt flavours – toffee, fig, caramel
  • Tangy Curd Variants – Passionfruit, lemon meringue, lime
  • Classic desserts such as sticky date and crème brulee
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