The late Anthony Bourdain once said that “food is everything we are.”
It is an extension of many things, an extension of one’s “nationalist feeling, ethnic feeling, your personal history, your province, your region, your tribe, your grandma. It’s inseparable from those from the get-go.”
This quote never resonated more with the entire world’s culinary adventures in 2020. With the restrictions and quarantine protocols that had to be made because of the COVID-19 pandemic, everyone was forced to be isolated from one another.
But despite the distance, it was food that binds us—with the online space being a communal venue for everyone to virtually engage and discuss anything about their passion for it.
Food trends become more than just points for discussion, it allowed us to cope with many crises in ways that we never expected.
In this High Five list, we have enumerated the food trends that went big last 2020.
Rise of Homegrown Food Businesses
With unemployment on the rise during the early stages of the Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ), more individuals began looking for new and alternative ways to earn.
Online selling was not new, but food items suddenly became the product of choice among many new small-time sellers.
Shelah Angela, a seller of baked goodies, noted that the extended lockdowns made her rethink to transform her hobby of cooking into a profitable business online.
“I think that it was the accessibility of social media platforms that unlocked the potential for food businesses. You don’t even have to pay any rent to install your store. All you need is a capital for your ingredients and a strong network to help you market,” she said.
Make It Yourself Delicacies
2020 is a year of many things. The pandemic started with a slew of netizens trying to perfect their version of Ube Cheese Pandesal, before eventually, flaunting to social media their Dalgona Coffee concoction.
2020 also became the year where a lot of people finally learned how to use their oven, creating trending food items such as sushi bakes, cookies, enhanced versions of canned foods, and sourdough bread.
Online Food Champions
2020 sees the rapid growth of online cooking shows and channels, most of which are developed by seasoned chefs and other emerging personalities.
Chef Myke Tatung’s “Simpol” introduces itself as a gateway to cooking, dodging the many complications of the activity by making things “simple”. It had already earned more than 300k followers.
Ryan Morales Reyes’ “Ninong Ry” peeks into a more experimental world of cooking, providing an accessible way to infuse creative methods using the base of many traditional local recipes.
These people, among many, champion the food scene during the pandemic for most of us who are continuing our culinary journeys, regardless if we have not mastered the art of cooking or not.
On Facebook alone, various groups have inspired many to share their “foodie” adventures.
Groups like “Let’s Eat Pare” was founded years back, but it found its bigger footing in the middle of extended lockdowns, when dining in restaurants were still restricted.
In these food groups, community members share pictures of their meal for the day, video recipes, and more.
“The catchphrase we would usually use is, “Kain po tayo” or “Kain”. It has been a ritualistic habit for most, we greet people by means of an invitation. You never will see this on any travel abroad. And for me, this speaks volumes of who are we as a nation, being accommodating to foreigners with our captivating smiles and cheerful disposition is part of our identity. It just comes naturally,” Let’s Eat Pare founder Mark Tanseco del Rosario shared about his online community.
The New Marketplace
Food delivery services are at an all-time high during the pandemic.
A survey released by Rakuten Insight revealed that having their food delivered, whether if it’s fresh market goods like fruits, meats, and vegetables or if it’s already cooked by a food establishment, is the most practical option given the increasing scares about the pandemic.
It took a global crisis in the form of COVID-19 to instantly shift the landscape of the food industry.
It did not take long before popular food establishments like Jollibee and Shakey’s opened up their menu with DIY versions of their bestsellers in the temporary absence of in-restaurant dining.
The food industry is inevitably going to lean heavily towards digital.
In an article released by Doxee, “the food industry has been revolutionized by digital, from production processes to distribution, and from data-driven marketing, the disruptive role of social media, to the frontier of personalization.”
What are your thoughts on our list? What are other food trends that you want us to add? Share your reactions in the comments section below.
Featured photos from Summit Media, Pinterest, and Dualit