ADM believes that after almost three years of ‘oppression’, 2023 will be ray of sunshine – especially in whetting consumer appetite for surprise and discovery, but keeping health and wellness – in all its shapes and forms – front and centre.
Escapism will be a key theme for the new year, finding consumers increasingly seeking out treats that will boost their mood while keeping them within their heath remit.
Accelerating this, consumers are also yearning for idealised versions of themselves and are increasingly willing to embark on a journey that reflects how they see their future selves.
“As consumers channel their emotions into their product purchases, vibrant manifestations are on the horizon for the new year, including fantastical flavour experiences and bold, captivating colours,” said ADM.
Once, twice, three times a brightness
The global nutrition leader believes the focus on personal health will only grow stronger next year, shaping consumer outlook, but also providing a distraction to this increasingly difficult environment.
In fact, FMCG Gurus’ Top Ten Trends for 2022 revealed that 47% of global consumers want more time to relax, while the market researcher’s 2021 Sleep & Stress Management Report found 32% plan to make improvements to their sleep habits.
People are actively seeking respite and this will only increase in the new year – which, the company believes, will signify a gravitation toward flavours and colours that will help shift consumer mood toward brighter and lighter moments.
The colour of the year
Blissful blue encapsulates this trend, signalling new possibilities with wide open skies and oceans. Along these lines, ADM’s 2023’s colour of the year is Digital Lavender, a gender inclusive colour that’s particularly tailored to self-care, healing and wellness.
According to ADM, the tone introduces floral lavender, nutty purple sweet potato and sweet berry, plum or grape notes, along with warm, neutral tones that correspond with comforting vanilla – all designed to help consumers feel more mellow and relaxed.
Pairing well with blue shades are refreshing, ‘limited edition’ flavour notes that cue wonder and fun-filled escapades. Dream-like fantasy flavours like mermaid and yeti (tutti frutti flavours) are already popping up in the marketplace – especially in the cake and confectionery space – along with sweet spots of peppermint, cotton candy, birthday cake and tropical cocktail.
Capitalising on the desire for adventure, transportive notes of spice and regional cuisines bring a sense of exploration to savoury snack occasions.
Fierce flavours and saturated shades
ADM forecasts a new wave of self-expression in 2023 – one that is reminiscent of the 1980s: think playfulness and attention-grabbing saturated shades like hot pink – expected to explode across all categories.
This intense mood boost pairs with unusual flavours like dragon fruit, pink grapefruit, fruit punch, rose and pink florals, adding an over-the-top touch to baked goods and desserts.
Even an offering as simple as water can evolve into something deliciously exciting with a touch of floral rose flavour.
In addition to pink, saturated shades of orange, blue, teal and purple will accompany bold flavour profiles like blue raspberry and ube (a purple spud related to orange sweet potatoes) – dialling up the volume throughout the upcoming year
This plays into the demand by 74% of global consumers, who are looking for new and usual, and exotic flavours, according to FMCG Gurus’ 2021 Flavour, Colour & Texture Trends Report.
Mintel’s GNPD shows the most popular flavours in North America – YOY growth 2020-2021 – are watermelon, mango and berry, providing inspiration for other regions around the world.
Beyond the yearning for adventure and escapism, ADM’s proprietary consumer research Outside Voice found 69% of consumers admit that simple, recognisable ingredients continue to influence their purchasing decisions.
And with a growing desire to proactively support their overall wellbeing, a more focused ‘healthy’ shop goes hand in hand with a personalised regime.
People want to feel good both physically and emotionally, curating their wellness routines with colours and flavours that raise their spirits, such as shades of orange (from saturated papaya to vibrant mandarin) enhanced with the tang of zesty citrus, juicy stone fruits and tropical mango and passionfruit, as well as fresh mint, herbs and botanicals.
Mintel’s GNPD reports citrus remains the most classic flavour profile, accounting for nearly 30% of new product launches. However, FMCG Guru’s Global Report 2022 found botanicals are on the rise, viewed as both premium and tasty by 43% of consumers.
The latter market researcher also noted the three most prioritised areas of wellness consumers would like to improve over the next 12 months include immune function; mental wellbeing; and energy.
However, the desire to feel good goes beyond personal boundaries, with more consumers looking to make a positive impact on their communities and the planet.
As such, products sporting colours and flavours that consumers connect with sustainable characteristics are on the rise. According to Nielsen, 73% of global consumers are increasingly seeking out companies that are transparent about where and how products are made, raised or grown.
That’s a lot at stake, but so much more to be gained as a producer that can demonstrate its worth.