Whole Foods Market’s Trends Council just unveiled their top 8 anticipated food trends for 2024 in the retailer’s ninth-annual Trends predictions report. Caffeine with added benefits, going back to basics in the plant-based category, complex heat from global peppers, and water conservation and stewardship are all among the food trends expected to rise in popularity across the industry in the next year.
Each year, the Trends Council – a collective of more than 50 Whole Foods Market team members from our US and UK team, including foragers, buyers and culinary experts – compile trend predictions based on decades of experience and expertise in product sourcing and studying consumer preferences, as well as in-depth workshopping with emerging and existing brands.
Whole Foods Market UK is also launching the Trends Discovery Box, a curated assortment of 11 products to represent each of the trends in the forecast. The boxes, available for £39.99 (including postage & packaging) allow consumers the chance to taste all the trends at once. Boxes go on sale Oct. 19 and are available for a limited time only here.
Meet our Local Foragers
“Our 2024 Product Discovery box delivers a selection of the most exciting products we predict will be the biggest food and wellness trends of 2024. We anticipate seeing these trends in the food industry at large, on dinner tables, in lunch boxes and on our store shelves.” – Louise and Daniel, Local Foragers
Whole Foods Market’s top 8 food trend predictions for 2024:
Put the “Plant” back in “Plant-Based”
The OGs of plant-based cuisine are making a comeback, putting the “veggie” back in your veggie burger and shrinking labels all over the plant-based category. We’re seeing new and emerging protein-forward products with mushrooms, walnuts, tempeh and legumes in place of complex meat alternatives.
Try the Trend: Better Nature Curry Tempeh Pieces, Biona Red Lentil Sunflower Seed Burgers, Bol Pea & Spinach Powder Soup.
Clean & Conserve: Water Stewardship
Brands across the aisles are promoting water conservation, and consumers are listening. New water brands use water from fruit by-products, which would otherwise be discarded. As well as the growing trend of regenerative agriculture, non-governmental organisations are also showing their support of farmed oysters, leveraging aquaculture to filter water and help restore coastal ecosystems. Lifestyle brands are also pushing water-conscious products like dry shampoos, shampoo bars and laundry detergent sheets.
Try the Trend: Spruce Bio Laundry Sheets Unscented, Tenth Muse, Italian Sumer Tenth Muse, My Skin Feels Moisturised, Parla Mouthwash Tabs, Ethique Gentle Powder Concentrate Shampoo.
Feel the Burn
Complex heat continues its evolution with global peppers taking off in every aisle—and the trend is only getting hotter. Specialty varieties like Carolina Reapers, Scorpion Peppers, Guajillo or Hungarian Goathorn Peppers are found fresh, whole, ground or pickled, and a new wave of botana sauces and chilli oils are popping up in condiment aisles nationwide.
Try the Trend: Gymkhana Butter Masala Curry Sauce, My Neighbour’s The Dumplings Chilli Sauce, Wilderbee Hot Honey, Lesley’s Sauces Jerk Sauce, The Garden of Eva Watermelon Chili Jam.
Shoppers have been finding ways to dress up their instant ramen at home for years now, but as brands step up their game, noodle lovers can take on less of the workload. Even better, brands are creating more gourmet options to rival the classics without certain preservatives and added MSG.
Try the Trend: Kung Fu Mama Biang Biang Noodle Kit, Clearspring Shoyu Ramen Noodles w Soya Soup, Itsu Chilli Miso Noodlecup.
TikTok creators have brought “Little Treat Culture” into the zeitgeist, and we’re on board. We know firsthand the power of a treat, like an impulse macaron buy or a fizzy, functional and flavour-forward drink. Brands are getting in on the trend by considering both cost and format—like individual serving packages that add joy without breaking a budget.
Try the Trend: Truff Black Truffle Hot Sauce, London Chocolate Madagascar 70%, Freckleface Floral Bath Bomb, Cocoba Pumpkin Chocolate Stirrer, Sublime Truffle, Parmesan & Black Pepper Butter
Women’s Health: From Taboo to Top of Mind
This year on social media, we’ve seen hormonal remedy recipes go viral, including raw carrot salad for estrogen management, seed cycling energy bites for each cycle phase and “sleepy girl mocktails.” We’re seeing more brands making products to support periods, pregnancy, postpartum, menopause and even sleep that address life stages and symptoms previously swept under the rug.
Try the Trend: Golden Balance Wunder Workshop, Wild Nutrition Women Perimenopause Complex, Weleda Nursing Tea, Flo Bamboo Sanitary Pads.
A Better Boost
Whatever your go-to source of caffeine, there are new ways to get the absolute most out of your morning or afternoon pick-me-up. Combining a boost with benefits has never been easier thanks to new coffee and energy drinks with added mushrooms, probiotics and more. There’s never been a better time to search the “clean caffeine” space for your next obsession.
Try the Trend: Brite Mango Pineapple Nootropic Drink.
Flavours of Mexico
Mexican ingredients and foods that haven’t always been mainstream are now coming to the forefront. Consumers are exploring flavours of Mexico beyond the taco—and in new formats, too. You can now find products like botana sauces, to-go tamales and tepache ready-to-drink beverages on shelves like never before.
Try the Trend: Cool Chile Co Chipotle Adobo, Taza Guajillo Chilli Chocolate, Tajin Classic Seasoning, Xochitl Stone Ground Hot Salsa, Salted Corn Chips Xochitl.Pick up your Whole Foods 2024 Trends Hamper for just £39.99 here before it sells out!