Flavored by coffee

The Food Channel predicts that products flavored with coffee will be a hit in 2016.

Instead of flavoring coffees, American consumers are now flavoring nearly everything else with coffee: chewable coffee cubes, coffee candy and coffee rubs are just a few, according to The Food Channel’s Top 10 Trends for 2016.

Kay Logsdon, editor of The Food Channel, says, "We've called out both flavors and industry behavior in this report, with something for the consumer and the food professional alike." Coffee flavor and flair ranked as The Food Channel’s No. 9 trend. At No. 3, tangy flavor came in ranked near the top.

Tangy is the newest flavor palate, according to the annual trends report. What used to be sweet, now is savory, and vice versa. Expect stronger flavors that pack a punch in order to make sure customers notice them, according to The Food Channel.

On a related front, clean flavor and clean ingredients are a prominent trend to consider, as well. According to Mintel’s top beverage and food trends for 2016, artificial is now Public Enemy No. 1. “Consumer demands for natural and less processed food and drink are forcing companies to remove artificial ingredients,” says Mintel’s Global Food and Drink analyst Jenny Zegler. “Products that have yet to do so will face scrutiny – or worse – from consumers who are looking for natural formulations with recognizable ingredients.”

Another key trend identified by Mintel is called Based on a True Story. “Consumers have been romanced by product origin, ingredients or inspiration stories. With similar claims made by legitimately hand-crafted as well as mass-produced products, this proliferation – and occasional propagation – will find consumers and regulators alike seeking products with verified claims.”