As ever 2016 has got off to a busy start. First thing on my to do list is to renew my annual subscriptions for the many foodie magazines that I fervently read every night in bed. Apparently ‘food porn is the new norm’ with consumers gravitating towards images aimed at the mind as well as their stomachs!
So why do I read all these mags, I certainly don’t have time to cook all the recipes. It’s simple I am searching for the holy grail of the retailing world ‘the next big thing’. Who remembers the ‘Delia effect’ with supermarket shelves being emptied of a particular product? The James Martin effect was certainly successful on my lamb. With customer service at the heart of the Larder I feel it is my duty to be ahead of the game.
According to food trends experts JWT Innovation you will be on the lookout for algae oil, savoury yoghurt, seaweed and any junk food will be ‘natural’. Diners will be looking for luxury dining experiences in remote and theatrical pop up locations (so last year!) The popularity of barbecuing will move onto home smoking and we should expect to see continued development in sustainability with by-products from one thing being made into another.
The new buzz word is ‘swavoury’ a mix of sweet and savoury, certainly I have seen a multitude of products containing sea salt and caramel or chocolate in many shapes and forms. The delightful Sea Salt and Caramel chocolate brittle supplied be the equally delightful Miss Witt was a huge hit with our pre-Christmas customers. My ever enduring husband feels he is a pioneer of this particular trend with his preferred harvest lunch for many years comprising of Pickled Onion Monster Munch and a Mars bar (eaten together) all washed down with a full fat Coke! However, the experts (with a bit of help from Jamie) inform me that we are moving away from sugar and that our palates have become more sophisticated and adventurous when it comes to snacks – so think again Mr Morgan!
So apart from sea salt in all things confectionery how can a humble farm shop owner incorporate these trends whilst being honest to her local roots?
Therefore I would like to make my own New Year suggestions, based on the expert’s predictions but with a local twist.
~ Healthy Cold Pressed Rape Seed Oil (also try the flavoured varieties they are so versatile).
~ Smaller portions of tastier artisan cheese.
~ The best quality meat and game you can afford but maybe eaten a little less often.
~ Local Honey as a great alternative to sugar.
~ Convenient packs of Tasty Seeds.
All available at the Larder and not a bag of Monster Munch in sight! Our criteria for stock is simple it must be local, delicious, hopefully unique and good value for money.
Happy New Year one and all, here’s to a healthy and prosperous 2016.