Food Report 2021 - Answers to current needs and changing values

Food trends: what will stay, what will change? An overview of the latest trends and developments in the food and catering industry

Food report 2021
Source & Copyright by Future Food Studio

Author: Hanni Rützler

  • Food trends are subjected to a stress test due to the crisis. Some are strengthened, others are at least temporarily slowed down. Cooking at home, for example, is experiencing a renaissance. It shows how systemically relevant the food industry really is.
  • The importance of domestic agriculture is increasing - we can use this new appreciation to increase diversity. Because agrobiodiversity makes agriculture more resilient and crisis-proof. And it ensures more variety on our plates.
  • Everyday catering is being fundamentally changed by the growing popularity of food delivery services and ghost kitchens. The delivery market is hotly contested - and the balance of power between delivery services and restaurants is being renegotiated as a result of the crisis.
  • Shaped by the megatrend health, more and more people want to forego alcohol in beverages, for example, but at the same time do not want to miss out on taste and enjoyment. Start-ups in particular are mixing up the beverage industry with alcohol-free urban drinks and helping to shape the liquid evolution.

Food trends - what remains and what will change

What is the global corona crisis doing with food trends that have guided and inspired producers, retailers, gastronomy, consumers in recent years and decades, but which have also helped to shape them? Are they obsolete now that much is changing? The Food Report 2021 shows which trends are weakening, which are changing radically and whether new trends will emerge.

Are there food trends that already had answers to problems before the crisis that are only now becoming really virulent? Which food trends offer orientation even in chaotic, unfamiliar times? This deals with the analysis of the Food Report 2021, which checks food trends for their resilience to crises. The 7 clusters of the Food Trend Map 2021: Health, Everyday Life, Quality, Enjoyment, Sustainability, Glocal and Beyond Food bring together different food trends and make the dynamics visible.

Food report 2021

Source & Copyright by Futur Food Studio

Ghost Kitchen - The disruption of the fast casual market

The industry insight gastro is all about the Ghost Kitchens. Before the corona crisis, they were only perceived as a niche phenomenon, but during the pandemic they rose to become an important pillar of urban food supply. The “ghost kitchens” are restaurants where only cooking is done but no guests are served. With the Ghost Kitchens, a disruption of everyday gastronomy had already been announced before the crisis. Now it happens faster than expected. The new food delivery platforms operating with ghost kitchens are developing into the Netflix and Spotify of the catering industry. The delivery service companies become food platforms that produce completely new gastronomy concepts.

The concept of Ghost Kitchens will fundamentally change the catering industry in the long term. With the increasing quality of delivery food, restaurants are becoming more and more places where the quality of stay is becoming increasingly important.

The corona crisis is the decisive driver and at the same time the stress test for alternative catering concepts. If the delivery of food works well during the crisis and the quality of the food is convincing, Ghost Kitchens have the chance to establish themselves in the mainstream in German-speaking countries and to become part of everyday food culture.

Eat sustainably

Source & Copyright by Nobelhart & Schmutzig

Biodiversity - The future of nutrition lies in diversity

One focus of the Food Report is diversity, more precisely biodiversity. What the global corona crisis shows us is that we should understand future challenges on a global scale and address them holistically. In agriculture and food production, these are primarily climate change and the maintenance of functioning ecosystems. In order to successfully meet these challenges, profound innovations are required. The conservation of biodiversity determines the future of our global food system. Agrobiodiversity makes agriculture more resilient in times of climate change and at the same time ensures that our diet is enriched. The variety of farm animals and plants depends on human activity: what we like to eat is grown and bred, what we do not use is in danger of extinction.

Food trends 2021

Cooks and restaurateurs are multipliers and ambassadors for the future of this new diversity: They are the crucial link between producers and consumers, because they bring this diversity to the plate and make it tangible. Restaurateurs who present their guests with previously unknown, forgotten and novel taste nuances in their dishes are also paving the way for a change in the food trade: from abundance to diversity.

Liquid Evolution - Drink better, drink better, drink healthier

Food Trends 2021

The key topic of beverages deals with liquid evolution: According to the motto "drink better, drink better, drink healthier". Even before the corona crisis, health was one of the most powerful megatrends that is driving the change in our eating and drinking culture. The beverage industry continues to see increasing demand for non-alcoholic beverages - from flavored mineral water and vitamin drinks to non-alcoholic beers to “virgin cocktails” and non-alcoholic spirits. The major beverage brands are now also responding to this shift. They are broadening their range of drinks with little or no alcohol and are targeting new, health-conscious customers with wellness-oriented branding.

In top gastronomy, it is now a good thing to offer an exquisite juice or tea accompaniment in addition to a wine accompaniment, which is perfectly matched to the dishes with its flavors. Manufacturers have new opportunities to experiment with old manufacturing processes, almost forgotten varieties and fermentation techniques to create new, exciting taste experiences.

Source: Zukunftsinstitut from the trend study Food Report 2021

Hanni Rützler's Food Report explains the most important trends, developments and future topics for food and beverage. With industry insights, key topics and best practices from all over the world, it serves food manufacturers, restaurateurs and food retailers as the basis for future decisions. Especially in the crisis.

about the author


Always informed about the latest lifestyle trends, architecture, design & interior, as well as current technologies around sustainability.

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Food report

About the author: Hanni Rützler

Hanni Rützler is one of the most renowned and influential food experts in Europe. The qualified nutritionist has been working as an author and consultant for the Future Institute in Frankfurt and Vienna since 2004. As a pioneer in nutritional science, consultant and researcher with multidisciplinary access to questions of eating and drinking behavior, Hanni Rützler has made a name for herself far beyond the German-speaking world not only since her legendary tasting of the first in-vitro burger.

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