In the age of the supermarket and global importation, we can afford to be picky and pamper our tastebuds. Thanks to the social media madness of Instagram, everybody in the world knows about the mashed avocado on granary toast you had for breakfast (garnished with chili flakes to really make that colour pop, obv). Likewise, do we believe the hype of de-constructed old favourites represented as the in-thing on a plate? To demonstrate the effect trends have on production, here are some recent foods which have enjoyed inflated sales and promotions of late.
Popcorn seems more popular now than ever. Instead of being the staple movie night treat of generations, it’s now marketed as a healthier alternative to potato based snacks. You’ll find brands like Propercorn at health food stores in an array of flavours, from sour cream & chive to coconut & vanilla.
Bar the odd amount of guacamole with nachos, until late the avocado has been one of those healthy fruits (yes, fruit) which is never ripe to buy. Now the avocado and its “good fats” has become more hipster than hippie and is offered everywhere including fast food giant Subway. The US appetite for the fruit has grown almost annually for the past 15 years, according to data from the Hass Avocado Board, with nearly four times as many sold as in 2000.
Cupcake mania is finally on its way out, but not after inspiring shows like 2 Broke Girls and Cupcake Wars. From maple bacon to specimens injected with a shot of absinthe, these palm sized treats became the must-have accessory when New York’s Magnolia Bakery appeared on Sex and the City. Many of us are even scrapping the cutting of the wedding cake, inviting guests to help themselves from a tower of miniature cakes.
(Un)fortunately for most of us, we no longer get to endure Brussells sprouts exclusively at Christmas. Although at least sprouts are a healthy trend, many are caramelizing them with cured meats in an attempt to make them tolerable.
Whilst on the one hand the surge in meeting the needs of “gluten-free” shoppers means there’s more choice than ever, you can’t help but feel it’s distracting from those with a genuine intolerance which can produce effects from diarrhea to death. Do establishments care a little less about dietary inquiries based on the assumption you’re another fad fanatic? Most of our bodies functioned just fine before, or we’d all be intolerant, so it’s somewhat insulting to those who genuinely don’t have access to unlimited choices.