AZTI lays the foundations of the first global community of food trends watchers with the winners of THE FOOD MIRROR challenge
- Isabel Hormaeche (Hong Kong), Helena Vaello (Madrid) and Beatriz Sánchez (Denver) are the three winners of the Internet contest.
- The contestants have provided their discoveries of new food products, ways of eating and trends, which will be added to the culinary trends identified by AZTI-Tecnalia.
- The jury, formed by different food-related agents and communicators y, have evaluated over 350 entries.
- Learning about consumption trends strengthens the commitment of the technology centre to be one step ahead of the demands of future consumers and offer solutions to the food industry.
- The three winners will enjoy a trip to the Basque Country organised by Basquetour-Euskadi during which they will enjoy a touristic and educational gastronomic and culinary experience.
(Bilbao, 17 June 2013) Isabel Hormaeche (TV producer living in Hong Kong), Helena Vaello (culinary consultant, Madrid) and Beatriz Sánchez (food technologist and oenologist living in Denver, USA) are the first members of the newly created international community of “foodwatchers”, after successfully winning the three phases of THE FOOD MIRROR GAME (www.thefoodmirror.com). This initiative, created by AZTI-Tecnalia, technology centre expert in food and marine research, has received funding from the Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology (FECYT) and the collaboration of Basquetour-Euskadi. The contest started in January with the purpose of creating the first global community of foodwatchers.
Until reaching the grand finale, the three winners have overcome three challenging phases. In the first stage they had to show a product, service or initiative that responded to one of the eight food trends previously detected by AZTI-Tecnalia, which they called the EATendencias. The second stage consisted of detecting new food trends. In the third challenge, the contestants had to prove their communication abilities and their involvement in the initiative by sending a video in which they expressed their personal motivations to become part of the international team of The Food Mirror. The jury was formed by AZTI-Tecnalia researchers, as well as representatives from the FIAB (Spanish Federation of Food and Beverage Industries), Basque Culinary Center, FECYT (Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology), the Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Environment, Cluster Food+i, companies such as TrendLab and 100 Montaditos, and media such as Gastroeconomy.
The promoters of the project valued the participation in the contest and the results positively: more than 500 registered users in the platform and over 350 observations using images and videos from around the world. Additionally, the development of the contest has allowed to test different observation and reporting methodologies through social media. The entries received in THE FOOD MIRROR GAME will be revealed soon through the project’s website: www.thefoodmirror.com.
This AZTI-Tecnalia initiative will strengthen the work line related to market research and the global consumer, allowing food companies to anticipate the demands of future consumers and detect business opportunities and niches in the food sector early.
The prize for the three finalists will be a week-long, all expenses paid trip to the Basque Country, where they will enjoy a tourism and educational experience related to food and gastronomy from several points of view: research, innovation, gastronomy, local products, tourism and the Basque culture. The award is promoted by the Basque Tourism Agency, Basquetour-Euskadi, in collaboration with different agents related with tourism and gastronomy.
First global community of foodwatchers
As well as creating the first international foodwatchers community, The Food Mirror project aims to anticipate the demands of future consumers and detect business opportunities and niches in the food sector early. For AZTI-Tecnalia this implies the opportunity of developing solutions and proposals for the food industry. The end user of the project will be society as a whole, who have close at hand new products and services that respond to their food-related needs.
‘The Food Mirror’ completes the food market research strategy launched in 2010 by the Trends and Innovation Observatory of the AZTI-Tecnalia Food Research Unit. The project makes it possible to broaden the geographic scope of the research, while connecting with people all over the world interested in food innovation, be they professionals, researchers or citizens committed to their role as food consumers.
The international foodwatchers community will work on research projects related to the needs of the food sector. The community will provide valuable information to be processed by the AZTI-Tecnalia Trends and Information Observatory and transferred to food companies as a source of inspiration for innovation.
Food of the Future
The eight food trends – EATendencias – currently highlighted by AZTI-Tecnalia are, in summary, the following:
- “Food Telling”. Food with a message. This trend responds to the demand for transparent, attractive and local information. It connects consumers with what they eat and gives greater identity and authenticity to the food itself.
- “SuperSense”. Multi-sensorial Experience. This trend aims to stimulate the senses, generating an original, pleasurable, intense and full sensorial experience.
- “Slowcal”. This trend implies a greater awareness of the personal, social, economic and environmental impacts of food consumption and therefore greater responsibility. It seeks quality eating, giving priority to enjoyment, balance, sustainability and proximity.
- “Here & Now”. Here and Now. This trend facilitates the lifestyle of the urban nomads, who demand health, flexibility, optimal time management and instant gratification of their needs anytime, anywhere.
- “Eater_tainment”. Food Experience. This trend is related to indulgence and self-satisfaction through memorable experiences that connect with the individual’s emotional needs. Adventure, fun, surprise and entertainment provide the added value to the food experience.
- “MadeSimple”. Make it simple for me. This trend creates flexible solutions that allow intelligent buying and consumption, opting for the best option in the least possible time. It is associated both with the product and with the buying and consumption process through services/tools that simplify and make the consumers’ lives easier.
- “MyHealth”. Personalised Health. This trend represents a proactive and responsible attitude towards promoting, preventing, preserving and monitoring personal well-being and health. It seeks personalized food, adapted to individual needs to gain physical, mental and emotional equilibrium.
- “EgoFood”. Food Expression. This trend is associated with the expression of both individual and group identity, so that consumer products “personify” the consumers’ desires, values and aspirations.
Benchmark technology centre in food and marine research
AZTI-Tecnalia, technology centre expert in food and marine research, is a foundation that aims at social development and improving competitiveness in the marine and food sectors through research and technological innovation. The Food Research Unit is based in Derio (Bizkaia) in an innovative building that incorporates the most advanced services and facilities in order to offer the best research, development and innovation services for the food industry.