Waitrose & Partners Food & Drink Report 21-22






PRE-BATCHED BOTTLED COCKTAILS Forget a G&T in a can. Premium pre-batched cocktails in a bottle are set to be huge. For a start, they’re convenient. Second, they taste great. And third, they are cost-effective as consumers don’t need to buy all the ingredients separately. There has been a trend towards people upgrading their tipples for years, and pre-batched bottled cocktails are set to represent the next wave.



REWILDING A quarter of the land at our 2,800 acre Leckford FarmEstate in Hampshire is dedicated to natural biodiversity. Rewilding is all about making space for nature, restoring ecosystems and doing our bit to help mitigate climate change. Sir David Attenborough urged viewers to ‘rewild the world’ in his 2020 Netflix documentary, A Life on our Planet , and we will see much more of this, both in rural and urban areas. On our dairy farms, we stipulate that at least 10% of space needs to be given to natural land.

Breakfast will become a greater focal point in our lives. With fewer commutes to work, families have more time together at the breakfast table. It’s the mealtime equivalent of a family group hug before the day begins. Consumption of breakfast staples is rising. A survey carried out during the first lockdown found that we ate eggs for breakfast 68% more times than in the previous year. Bacon was up 21% and pastries up 25%. In some cases, breakfast is being spread out across the morning rather than being confined to first thing. People are becoming more adventurous when it comes to the first meal of the day, with dishes such as shakshuka and Mexican breakfast burritos growing in popularity.


PEOPLE AND PLANET OVER PROFIT Pressure will continue to mount to reduce the amount of carbon being released into our atmosphere and for many businesses and other organisations, this will mean doing things differently By looking to nature and closing the loop to ensure nothing is built for one use, we canmake better use of our resources and help the environment in the process – amodern-daymust for any sustainably conscious shopper or business. CLOSING THE LOOP PLANTING AND REPLENISHING Rewilding of natural habitats and a move back to regenerative farming is not only essential, but critical to manage growing levels of CO2. Initiatives such as those being led by the Woodland

Trust to plant 50 million trees by 2025 and a move to farming methods that help sequester carbon will form a major part of the solution. MARINE PERMACULTURE Growing up to half a metre a day, seaweed removes CO2 from the water and helps to restore its alkaline balance. Not only an important food source, seaweed could also help draw down significant volumes of carbon from the atmosphere, in turn cooling and replenishing marine ecosystems to more sustainable levels.. GOING FULLY ELECTRIC As the global economy grows, the number of cars on roads around the world is set to double to two billion by 2040, according to the latest predictions. A quicker transition to electric cars will be critical in managing carbon emissions for both consumers and businesses.

UMAMI Umami will continue to grow in popularity, becoming the prevailing profile in our food. The Japanese word is one of the five basic tastes – along with sweet, bitter, salty and sour – and is akin to a savoury flavour (it translates as ‘pleasant savoury taste’). Sales of our Cooks’ Ingredients Umami Paste, which adds depth of flavour to any dish, are up 17% compared with 2019.


POTATO MILK We’ve seen the popularity of soy, almond, oat and pea milk in recent years. Now it’s the turn of potato milk. Low in sugar and saturated fat, it’s set to dominate coffee shop menus in the coming months.



CLIMATARIANISM A diet focused on reducing your carbon footprint is gaining popularity. As part of this year’s Food & Drink Report, we asked shoppers whether the carbon footprint of their food is important to them. Nearly 70% said it was either ‘very’ or ‘somewhat’ important. It’s people’s way of keeping tabs on their personal impact on the environment.

BORDERLESS FREESTYLE The trend for fusing one global cuisine with another is over. Instead, adventurous cooking is all about a freestyle and borderless approach to the world’s larder. We will increasingly see the mish-mashing of food styles from around the world – and there are no rules governing any of it. Drawing on their travels, adventurous cooks (both in the home and in restaurants) will blend flavours, formats and techniques to create new dishes. These creations may be without heritage but they’ll be bursting with inspiration.



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