LAS VEGAS — The 2023 Winter Fancy Food Show saw more than 1,100 exhibitors showcase their newest products Jan. 15-17 in Las Vegas. The $175 billion specialty food industry homes in on consumers looking for premium products, often made in small batches.
This year, the Specialty Food Association’s Trendspotter Panel predicted an interest in bold and intense flavor experiences, specifically within the sauce and condiment categories.
“What began in the hot sauce category is exploding into honey, spreads, confections, beverages, and snacks, snagging new markets like younger consumers, especially, and inspiring specialty food companies to introduce heat and spice into existing product lines,” said Mikel Cirkus , global creative director at Firmenich Inc. and a member of the SFA trends panel, at the October panel meeting.
This Little Goat launched its newest line of chili crunches at the show, which can top everything from ice cream to pizza, according to the company. The oil-based chili crunches add a subtle heat and texture to applications and are available in original, spicy and chili lime flavors.
“I am very excited for the next stage of growth for This Little Goat,” said Greg Biggers, chief executive officer. “We have turned a corner from a small startup to a nationally recognized brand, quickly growing and I am proud to help drive our portfolio of products into new stores and homes across the country.”
Another trend seen at 2023’s Winter Fancy Food Show was elevating the experience of the home chef.
“We’re hearing from Trendspotters that during the pandemic everybody was cooking more at home to the point of fatigue,” said Denise Purcell, vice president of content and education at the Specialty Food Association, in an interview before going to the show. “They still want to cook even though life has gone ‘a little more back to normal,’ but they’re looking for help and shortcuts.”
Thai sauce brand Watcharee’s expanded with a new line of six Thai-inspired dipping and stir fry sauces. Founded by Watcharee Limanon, the brand is catering to those at-home chefs who are looking for an elevated experience.
“Our new classic and Thai-inspired sauces are as versatile as they are flavorful,” Ms. Limanon said. “When I created them I had in mind busy home cooks who wanted to bring a new flair to their stir fries, salads or grills, but may not have time for complicated recipes. These sauces are made in Thailand from fresh, clean, traditional ingredients.”
Click to view new products from the Winter Fancy Food Show.