21 Sep 2023
The Taste Tomorrow patisserie industry trend forecast based on insights from a global survey of 20,000 consumers in 50 countries, along with the latest AI-powered online data analysis.
Get ready to whip some innovation into your patisserie creations and sprinkle some trends on top. We’ve lined up the 3 most important consumer trends for 2024 that emerged from our latest Taste Tomorrow global research. Stay on top of the hottest trends in cakes, patisserie and sweet pastry while simultaneously understanding what draws consumers towards these fashions.
These are the 3 hottest trends shaping the 2024 patisserie industry:
Tech inspired & Experience delight
These trends are firmly grounded in the findings from Taste Tomorrow, the bakery, patisserie, and chocolate industry's most comprehensive consumer research program. It stands as the world's largest and most inclusive initiative of its kind, gathering input from 20,000 consumers across 50 countries. Our distinctive approach seamlessly merges extensive consumer surveys with advanced always-on online tracking using the latest semantic AI techniques, revealing the core consumer needs and motivations propelling these trends.
The research is based on 3 pillars:
AI & Data Science - always-on analysis of social media conversations, searches and mentions in 9 languages, in order to be the first ones to discover emerging trend signals and predict their growth trajectory
Worldwide consumer survey - human cultural intelligence that is indispensable for decoding which consumer needs, motivations and narratives underlie each trend
Trend Framework - our consumer experts use a globally consistent lens to make sense of the entire trend ecosystem
Find out more about the Taste Tomorrow trend forecast methods.
Harmonizing traditional craftsmanship with cutting-edge technology
Backed by the pioneering Taste Tomorrow research, the 'Tech Inspired' movement is the driving force shaping the patisserie landscape in 2024. It has firmly established itself as the industry's fastest-growing global trend. At its core is the integration of cutting-edge technology like AI, driven by consumers' increasing appetite for unique and memorable dining experiences—a trend we've coined as 'Experience Delight'. This transformation is especially evident as consumers embrace online shopping convenience, prompting brick-and-mortar patisserie stores to elevate their offerings for exceptional, unforgettable experiences.
Notably, a significant 42% of consumers worldwide now advocate for more automated stores, a substantial increase from 2018's reported 35%. This statistic underlines the surging demand for tech-inspired and memorable shopping experiences, extending this demand to the patisserie sector.
‘Tech Inspired’ trend is about fulfilling consumers' desires for novelty and memorability through technology. With modern consumers being irresistibly drawn to tech-inspired solutions that elevate their culinary adventures, patissiers should consider the potential of ChatGPT— a groundbreaking AI tool. ChatGPT can assist patissiers in crafting groundbreaking recipes that redefine flavor and desserts that astound taste buds. Additionally, ChatGPT excels in optimizing ingredient usage, reducing waste while offering personalized recommendations for consumers seeking extraordinary culinary experiences within the realm of 'Experience Delight'.
Brick-and-mortar stores can tap into this consumer interest by offering enticing products that ignite indulgence within an unforgettable environment. Give your customers an experience that simply can't be replicated online. Think of the glass-walled kitchen in the ornate, baroque tearoom at Demel in Vienna. Guests can watch the pastry chefs in action while enjoying an iconic piece of sachertorte underneath the crystal chandeliers. This offers entertainment and even makes the cake taste better, because guests can observe how it was prepared.
Stay close to the familiar when innovating
One of the pastries that went viral on TikTok this year was the cube croissant by the London bakery Le Deli Robuchon. This laminated pastry has a perfectly geometric shape and comes in a variety of flavors such as vanilla, chocolate, and matcha with raspberry. TikTokkers loved to queue up for this snack and show themselves off biting into this trendy new snack and sharing their review with the world.
With this innovation, pastry chef Ait Elamouam knows exactly how to hit the right spot. While consumers like to try new foods, they aren’t keen on venturing too far into unknown territories. They are looking for innovations with a familiar aspect, such as the trusted croissant in a new and surprising form, that is exciting to eat, but offers a well-known flavor and texture. It seems that consumers are sticking to the classics they know and trust ever more, since 73% of consumers state they like to have a familiar element when trying new types of food. In 2021, that was just 67% of people worldwide. With a score of 79%, consumers in South America, the Middle East and Africa are especially wary of everything too new and different.
Please consumers by offering products that bring feelings of warmth and comfort. Traditional hot cross buns, croissants or tres leches cakes offer sweet and creamy flavors loved by all, and invoke happy memories of family gatherings. If you want to experiment, try out food with different textures and in new formats. Now more than ever, texture is a valued component that can offer newness or familiarity to a baked product. So add a surprising caramel center to your well-known pastries or simply focus on making your cake dough extra fluffy.
Be sure to pay special attention to looks as well, because the term eye-candy has never been more fitting than today. Five years ago, 54% of consumers agreed that Food that looks good, tastes good. Now, that number has gone up to 64%. We are drawn towards perfectly golden brown, shiny and airy Danish pastries because a beautiful laminated dough creation is a sign of skill and craftsmanship, just like a sourdough bread with a nice big ear or a satin shine, flawless bonbon. Appearance is an indicator of quality and an artisanal and handmade aesthetic is valued higher than simply visual perfection.
A treat from nearby is better than a treat from far away
It used to be the case that things from afar benefited from an aura of exclusivity and singularity, but the table has turned. Consumers now prefer to buy local food or food that is produced locally. 39% of people buys food that is locally produced or made with local ingredients at least weekly. It’s now local pastry and bread that is valued for its authenticity. They gain authenticity from their special recipes and profit from a higher value and quality perception.
Two out of three consumers want to know where their food comes from, so transparency is key if you want to profit from the local trend. Be sure to share how you make your food, what ingredients are used and where they come from.
The call for transparency is highest in the Middle East and Africa. 81% of consumers wants to be informed on those product specs. There, well-known pastry chefs such as Sahar Parham Al Awadhi draw influence from local recipes and seek out the best local ingredients for their creations. The former Head Pastry Chef at the Burj Al Arab – one of the world’s most luxurious hotels in Dubai – loves to work with products such as rosewater or cardamom for her signature creations such as the re-invention of the classic Egyptian umm Ali as a white chocolate sphere with rose mousse, pistachio sponge and toffee. She prefers to use locally sourced ingredients to work more sustainably and to support agriculture in the UAE.
Sustainability is an important driver among consumers too to opt for locally produced foods. 70% think that is better for the environment. Another 65% believe that it is healthier to eat local products as well. So opting for local production and/or ingredients makes your products attractive on many levels and to many different consumers.
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