The ‘It’ Foods: Bite on the Next Big Food Trend (Get in now or eat it later)
Friends, it’s time to make some money.
Somewhere, someone is doing just that, while we sit around eating all the kale.
Which is the point exactly. The kale. Cabbage’s overachieving cousin. Since when the kale?
Since about three years ago, when it started to be that you couldn’t throw a rock without hitting someone who was “juicing” (discussion for a later date: How to make money off the verbization of perfectly good nouns). And kale was a key element of those oh so very green juices.
Now, kale is ubiquitous. Not a day goes by, probably, that someone doesn’t shove some kale chips at you or wax rhapsodic about its health benefits. (Per the USDA Nutrient Database: A cup of raw kale has 33 calories, three grams of protein, six grams of carbs, 100 mg of calcium, 330 mg of potassium, 80 mg of vitamin C, 6,693 IU of vitamin A and 472 ug of vitamin K)(It also can help you land the airplane if one of the engines goes out, because a hallmark of trendy foods is that they have secret magical properties.)
Kale is an easy punchline, but produce industry insiders claim its popularity hasn’t plateaued yet — they’re also claiming 2014 is the year of cauliflower and collard greens, so keep your eyes and ears open for opportunity. Which gives us time! Just as someone is obviously making money off of kale — growers, marketers, whomever — so too can we make money off the Next Big Food Trend. All we have to do is prognosticate what it’s going to be!
Take, for example, pastry chef Dominique Ansel, who conceived the Cronut, a donut made from a croissant for which people in New York City lined up for hours last year. This week at SXSW in Austin, Texas, Ansel is offering milk shots in chocolate chip cookie glasses. Oh, the buzz!
Folks, that needs to be us.
Remember back in the ‘90s when everyone “discovered” pesto? And by extension pine nuts? Remember the quinoa hysteria of the mid-00s? Which, oddly, came up alongside the cupcake tsunami?
Remember Sriracha, wheatgrass, red velvet everything, pumpkin spice, bacon? Remember yesterday, when you considered buying chia seeds at the grocery store, despite not knowing what they even are, let alone whether they should be eaten or used to grow kitschy objects d’art?
Let us put on our thinking caps. What’s going to be the new subject of Pinterest boards and slightly clueless New York Times Style section think pieces? What’s going to be the talk of yoga class? What’s going to make us rich?
We can figure out how to share the wealth later — maybe it’ll be like those people who buy Powerball tickets together? Anyway, see our suggestions for the Next Big Food Trend.