2024 promises significant evolutions in the culinary landscape, from fine dining to fast food. We will see an ever-increasing interaction between technology and gastronomy, for a near future in which health, attention to waste and sensory experience will merge into a perfect balance.
Let’s explore the most interesting trends together, to project ourselves into a year full of innovation and taste.
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Technology and automation
Technological innovations, starting with Artificial Intelligence, are revolutionising the way we cook and consume food, the way we manage staff and production processes, and the way we communicate with business.
Automation will be particularly important in delivery and take-away services, where production volumes are higher and the speed of processes is crucial. To meet these needs, technologies such as blast chillers can be used to prepare in advance and break down semi-finished products: a great competitive advantage to consider.
Less processed foods
In recent years, we have witnessed a continuous spread of terms such as ‘superfood’, ‘adaptogen’ or ‘functional’, indicating that health is an important purchase driver. However, the popularity of these terms has been a double-edged sword, making young people increasingly suspicious of such claims.
In 2024 we will see a return to low-processed foods prepared in the most natural way possible: healthy will mean ‘without additives’, leaving the more exotic or niche offerings somewhat to one side.
Here again, the blast chiller will become a valuable ally in the kitchen, allowing a long conservation of fresh (and seasonal!) food without the need for additives.
Expansion of plant-based foods
From soya beverages (and similar) to alternatives to meat and fish, the choice of plant-based dishes is spreading like wildfire, from restaurants to places offering quick meals out.
The reason is not only related to sustainability or the choice of a vegetarian or vegan diet: in 2024, health also comes into play. More and more people are showing the need to increase their intake of fruit and vegetables, which is often lacking in the diet of those who often eat out.
The zero waste culture is making its way more and more into professional kitchens, driven by big names on the gastronomic scene such as star chefs Massimo Bottura or Davide Oldani. The aim is to avoid waste as much as possible, learning to make the most of the less valuable cuts of meat and fish or the more unusual parts of fruit and vegetables, to save money and reduce the impact on the environment.
Going to a restaurant, especially at a time like this when the cost of living is constantly rising, has to be a real experience.
The menu in 2024 must include quality raw materials and innovative proposals, a true exercise in style and creativity. The location will have to reflect the same attention to detail, allowing customers to immerse themselves in an unforgettable atmosphere.
Valorisation of local foods and traditions
The choice of ingredients and culinary techniques in 2024 will emphasise tradition, but reinvented through the chef’s experience and imagination. PDO and PGI products will find new lustre, becoming the protagonists of a territorial narrative.
2024 invites us to explore the past, embrace the present and prepare for a culinary future full of flavours, traditions and endless innovation.