Persimmon, starfruit to be popular flavors in 2009

by Staff
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CHICAGO — Mintel predicts in 2009 manufacturers will emphasize exotic fruits and fresh, soothing flavors with spice to make their products interesting.

"Today’s manufacturer is constantly looking for those tastes and aromas that stand out and capture shoppers’ imagination," said Lynn Dornblaser, leading new product expert at Mintel. "By adding exotic fruits and unusual ingredients to everyday products, companies give people the opportunity to experiment and move out of their comfort zones without breaking the bank."

Mintel identified seven flavor forecasts for 2009, including persimmon, starfruit, lavender, cactus, chimichurri, peri-peri and masala.

Persimmon can be used in combination with more common fruits and already is seen in a Japanese yogurt that has white peaches, persimmon and apricots.

Lavender will be used more in food and beverages and already is being used in products such as Lindt Chocolate Provence’s Lemon-Lavender Dream chocolate in Germany.

Chimichurri has its roots in Latin America and is a sauce for grilled meats. It already has been seen in the United States through products such as Gaucho Ranch's Original Argentinean Chimichurri Steak Sauce.

Peri-peri is an African hot sauce made popular by Nando's restaurants in the United Kingdom. Masala is an extension of the curry trend.

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