Top Trends at the 2023 Summer Fancy Food Show

The Specialty Food Association’s Summer Fancy Food Show 2023 showcases products and flavors that will influence the specialty food industry in the months ahead. The event attracts thousands of international companies across specialty food and beverage categories, unveiling a number of exciting innovations related to indulgence, health, convenience and sustainability. Whether operators want to level up a menu or boost to-go sales, here’s a closer look at the top trends we discovered at the show.

Extra-Crunchy Snacks

Salty snacks, including chips, popcorn, and pretzels, hit the top spot in best-selling retail categories, according to SFA’s State of the Specialty Food Industry research, 2023-2024 edition. Traditional chips are seeing a lot of innovation, but the trend extends to seeds and grains baked into crackers and chips for extra crunch and a health boost.

One-Step Convenience

Convenience is key for today's consumers and is taking the form of fast one-step meals. In addition to on-the-go, consumers still desire to cook at home but with more convenience.

Flavors from Around the World

Flavors and ingredients from all parts of the world are emerging. Globally inspired condiments, sauces, and seasonings continue to let people travel while dining out or cooking from home. 

Broadening Plant-Based Options

Expanded ingredients, forms, and categories of plant-based options continue to grow. This includes cheese, seafood, butter, and more!

Sustainability and Product Sourcing

Brands continue to respond to consumer concern over environmental impact, and operators should look to ethically sourced and produced sustainable products that are made from upcycled ingredients.

The sustainability story can be told in a variety of ways, from product sourcing to packaging options. Eco-friendly packaging solutions can help foodservice establishments move closer to reaching their sustainability goals while ensuring food is delivered to consumers safely and sustainably.

For the success of a product on today’s shelf or in the marketplace, aesthetics and packaging can be a deciding factor in whether a company falls behind or finds success. From sustainability, customization, convenience and performance, the right packaging can transform the consumer experience and help operators exceed customer expectations.

“People eat with their eyes first. It has to look a certain way in order to bring people in,” shared Giada De Laurentiis, Chef & Keynote Speaker at the Summer Fancy Food Show 2023.