Next year's flavors for consumer packaged goods are going to be a mix of old and new, as ethnic flavors become the norm and certain spices are added for their functional benefits, according to a new report by market researcher Mintel.
Cardamom, which is intensely aromatic, will extend beyond the ethnic foods where it's liberally used and will turn up as a flavoring for confectionery items like chocolate, such as an orange-cardamom flavored bar by Cosmic Chocolate.
Sweet potato, whether candied, fried, baked or boiled, is slated to be the new functional food. Rich in dietary fiber, beta carotene and vitamins C and B6, the versatile vegetable has been shown to stabilize blood sugar, lower blood pressure and help with digestive conditions.
Functional spices are likely to include ginger, turmeric and cinnamon.
Following the widely reported studies showing that hibiscus lowers blood pressure and bad cholesterol, the flower (which is commonly brewed as a tea), is slated to be added to beverages. Premium Essence Water from Hint already features Hibiscus-Vanilla flavored water.
The next superfruit will come from the Amazon. Cupuaçu has a distinctive flavor and is related to cocoa. It's loaded with vitamins and antioxidants, and also contains essential fatty acids and amino acids. Musselmans has a lime and cupuaçu flavored apple sauce and the fruit is already a key ingredient in many energy drink preparations.
Rosewater will also become a popular flavor and could be added to certain baked goods like brownies and cookies. Latin spices, i.e. cilantro, will also determine the flavors of more new products, the report said, citing Whole Foods' Mayan Ceviche and Icelandic Salsa Shrimp Cocktail.