December 21, 2021

A cosy, comforting Christmas: Discover SVZ’s top 3 winter trends thumbnail image

During the holiday season, consumers have traditionally turned to nostalgic tastes that remind them of comfort and home. From the cranberries used in Christmas fruit cake to roasted carrots and parsnips, fruit and vegetables play a significant role in comforting, festive indulgences.

However, with consumers today demanding healthier, more environmentally responsible options – how can innovative food and drink manufacturers respond to their needs? Can fruit and vegetable ingredients make Christmas treats guilt-free? SVZ has all the insights on this year’s festive trends and what to expect!

Season’s ‘meatings’

Once seen as the only diets in the plant-based category, veganism and vegetarianism now share the limelight with the flexitarian diet. Flexitarianism caters for those who aren’t quite ready to give up meat but want to embrace more plant-based options – and this consumer shift towards meat alternatives was reflected in Tesco’s 2021 Christmas Report, which found that 27% of UK adults would be catering for vegan, vegetarian or plant-based guests this Christmas. But which foods and drinks are these three types of consumers choosing when it comes to their long-awaited Christmas feast?

With quality ingredients and forward-thinking innovation, consumers can still enjoy their Christmas comfort foods without meat. For brands looking to create hearty, appealing plant-based treats, squash is a strong choice. SVZ’s butternut squash single strength purees can be added to soups or even spring rolls to enhance the taste and nostalgic feel for those choosing to avoid animal-derived foods.

Wonderful winterberries

One of the most versatile fruit families, berries are a staple all year round. From strawberry ice cream in the blazing heat to a sweet cranberry sauce on a cosy winter evening, there are endless applications for berries. Looking at winter specifically, we’re already seeing some unique festive berry innovations.

UK supermarket Morrisons, for example, recently launched ‘The Best Vanilla, Raspberry and Prosecco Panna Cotta Star’ which incorporates both raspberry jelly and fresh raspberries. For NPD teams looking to provide new berry innovations over the festive period, SVZ is perfectly placed to provide high quality, nutritious berry juice concentrates, NFC juices, purees and more. Other fruits that are perfect for the season are oranges, pumpkin and ginger.

Guilt-free & tasty

While summer is a time when many tend to take a detox and focus on their health goals, Christmas desserts are also getting the ‘-free’ treatment this year. Consumers are increasingly concerned about their health and how what they eat impacts it, so we’re seeing many take the ‘sensible indulgence’ approach for the holidays. This way, consumers can enjoy their festive indulgence without the guilt.

Manufacturers are therefore developing sweet treats with natural sugars such as chocolate puddings with courgette or orange, or pumpkin-spiced desserts. Ice cream brand Wheyhey, for example, is using tasty fruit ingredients in their festive mulled wine-flavoured ice cream – and as it’s free of added sugar, it can be enjoyed in a guilt-free way. With 13% and 11% of 18–24-year-olds preferring ice cream and chocolate desserts respectively over more traditional treats like Christmas pudding, why not explore healthier versions of these crowd-pleasers?

Inspire the palates of everyone this Christmas by using SVZ’s 100% natural fruit and vegetable ingredients – get in touch with our team today to find out more.

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