Unilever reveals future menus

The company has released its Future Menus 2024 report.

Future Menus 2024, the annual trends report that maps out seven global trends shaping the UK foodservice industry, has been released by Unilever Food Solutions.

The key shifts expected in restaurants this year include rising demand for adventurous flavour combinations, plant-based dishes entering the mainstream and a focus on transforming healthy options to create unexpected food innovations. 

This year's foodie trends

The report highlights consumer demand for 'Flavour Shock', characterised by unexpected flavour combinations and twists on classic dishes, such as using sweet and spicy Mexican sauces in burgers. Leaning into sensorial dining with fusions and 'chaos cooking' provides an opportunity for operators to elevate dining out occasions by providing unique experiences. 

The 'Feel Good Food' trend explores the relationship between nutrition and wellbeing, as well as local sourcing, sustainability and embracing innovations in food production. Consumers are putting increasing importance on knowing the nutritional content of the meals they eat, so it's time to innovate 'healthy options' to create the unexpected, using alternative veg and nutritional grains to help safeguard all aspects of human health.

When it comes to plant-based menu items, despite reports that veganism is on the decline, diners continue to seek greater variety in their meal choices. The report highlights 'Irresistible Vegetables' as a continued trend. With this in mind, operators should strive to promote veg on their menus to support customers' flexitarian lifestyles and champion sustainability, making veg the hero for plate appeal and the future of the planet. 

Unilever is helping chefs tap into these trends by providing recipe inspiration, culinary training and professional products to more than three million operators worldwide. The company's second annual Future Menu Trends Report features recipes, insights and practical tips drawn from the expertise of 250 in-house Unilever chefs and feedback from more than 1,600 chef professionals across 21 markets. Click here to download this year's report

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