is a massive health food trade show and conference in Anaheim where new products are launched and health food crazes emerge. We can attest to its sprawling size – after tasting so many different products last week, our tongues went numb!
Here are 5 snack trends that stuck out at the show:
Whether in powdered or chewy fruit snack form, it seemed like this African superfruit was everywhere. The ingredient is super high in fibre and antioxidants (vitamin C in particular) and is purported to boost energy and help regulate blood sugar.
See: Kaibae Bonga Foods
Not-So-Dry Fruit Snacks
Dried fruit has a rep for being boring, but several companies shook up this image with juicier packaged varieties. We tried kettle-cooked apple slices and water-infused figs and apricots, all bursting with flavour and texture.
See: Fruit Bliss Big Slice
Bars are the most ubiquitous healthy snack, and when you go to a show like Expo West, you get bar exhaustion quickly. Thankfully, a few companies included savoury bars in their product mix. We tried a version studded with walnuts and olives, and another coconut curry variety. A welcome change of taste! See: Mediterra
Jerky definitely isn’t a new snack category, but the amount of dried meat we tried at the show was insane! Vendors focused on small-batch, antibiotic-free artisan varieties and jerky-based trail mix with dried fruit and nuts; cherries make a particularly nice pairing. See: Duke’s Kooee Snacks Crickets
This insect trend surprised us! Ground into a flour, crickets were included in cookies, bars, and smoothie powders, and touted as a clean and Paleo-friendly source of protein, iron, and B12. We couldn't detect a taste in the products we tried. See: Chapul
Other notable trends:
- Turmeric (especially in drink or tea form).
- Squeeze packs, particularly for nut butter and chia/fruit mixes.
- Apple cider vinegar drinks.
- Freekah as the new “it” grain.
- Monk Fruit as the new “it” sweetener.
- Juice with more fibre (e.g. with extra pulp or with a snack on the side).
- Functional water, including varieties with artichoke and probiotics.
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