Organic, Exotic, and Sustainable Food Trends For 2019

There are some exciting new food trends on the horizon for 2019. From exotic fruits and veggies to brand new lettuce and various homemade staples, our plates may look a little different this year.

In 2018, we all wanted transparency. The consensus amongst industry experts was that we wanted to know how our food was grown or produced and that we could trust what was on the label.

We all still crave the truth about what we put into our bodies, and we’ve turned a corner where sustainability in almost everything is vital. This year, that trend will undoubtedly continue in many different forms.

Sustainable Food Packaging

Eco-conscious packaging is one of the top 10 food trends identified by Whole Food Markets. The “single-use” days are over. Expect to see bags and containers that can either be reused or composted, and even food wraps made from beeswax, canvas, or silicone. Consumers will likely join in on the fun by bringing reusable produce bags to eliminate the awful plastic ones (that I always struggle to open) at the supermarkets.

Beeswax wraps by Made by Bees

Exotic Palates

Various exotic fruits and vegetables may be easier to find at the local supermarket this year. Think Mexican Sour Gherkin (a kind of cucumber), Watermelon Radish, and maybe even the world’s worst smelling fruit, the Durian (if you can stomach the odor!).   

Durian Fruit has many benefits
Durian Fruit

At the NLS Food Evolution Summit in San Diego, food experts predicted exotic fruits would be chosen for their multiple health benefits. The Dragon Fruit, for example, is loaded with antioxidants, protein, and phytonutrients. Romanesco broccoli is said to work wonders for the reproductive system, amongst other things.

Edible flowers, different herbs, microgreens, and heirloom varieties will also likely be hot ticket items.

New Kale, New Milk, and New Desserts

For those of you just getting used to the idea of including kale in your diet, there’s a new player in the game. Consumers, nutritionists, and chefs began looking for a replacement to romaine lettuce after last year’s e.coli outbreak. What they found was celtuce.


Celtuce is a lettuce cultivar that looks like a cross between romaine lettuce and celery. Its stems are the most delicious part and are said to taste much like leeks. The SRG Culinary Council predicts we will see a lot more of this vegetable in 2019.

Supermarket News is forecasting a massive boom in the oat milk market, which is not only very creamy but also a dairy-free, nut-free, and sometimes even gluten-free alternative to milk.

Maybe it’s not the best time for the dairy industry, because Whole Food Markets is also predicting healthy desserts like frozen avocado cream, tahini, and coconut water will replace good ol’ fashioned ice cream in 2019. Add some chocolate hummus to the mix, and we have ourselves a party.  

Lab Meat

It’s no surprise the trend of eating more plant-based protein will prevail this year, especially with government organizations such as Health Canada heavily promoting them in the latest edition of the food guide.

But I’ve heard of everything (well, almost everything) now that I’m learning about lab-grown meat. Several different food companies are reportedly in the midst of growing meat, including beef, poultry, and seafood from cultured cells. That means the future of our carnivorous cravings won’t involve raising animals for slaughter.

While we’re on the topic of meat, Whole Food Markets predicts we will likely see a rise in faux meat snacks, such as king trumpet mushrooms.   

Slow-Food Movement

We live in a pretty fast-paced world where just about anything and everything is instantly available. While meal kits that come together in 30 minutes or less are expected to continue trending throughout the year, experts say it’s clear many of us are looking to slow things down.

Homemade Bread

Pinterest searches over the past six months indicate North Americans plan on spending a lot more time in the kitchen working on things like homemade bread and jam. It’s all about living in the moment and appreciating hard work that goes into wholesome foods.

It’s also likely about food prices going up.

Other Predictions

From the Pegan diet (a mix of the paleo and vegan ways of eating) and fermented foods to ginger water and flavors strongly influenced by Pacific Rim countries, 2019 promises to be a year that combines new tastes with older ideas.

More importantly, the current trends are showing a shift in the way we view, obtain, and consume our food. A healthier outlook for our bodies and the planet.

Take a look at this year’s top gardening trends here.

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Catherine Sherriffs

Editor at Garden Culture Magazine

Catherine is a Canadian award-winning journalist who worked as a reporter and news anchor in Montreal’s radio and television scene for 10 years. A graduate of Concordia University, she left the hustle and bustle of the business after starting a family. Now, she’s the editor and a writer for Garden Culture Magazine while also enjoying being a mom to her three young kids. Her interests include great food, gardening, fitness, animals, and anything outdoors.