The research looked at almost 100 Limited Time Offerings (LTOs) across seven European markets.
According to the report the top three festive LTO trends for 2020 include:
* Premium Indulgence - Hero beverages, often bakery-inspired, elevate indulgent beverages to premium status with richer taste profiles and more complex flavour pairings. In the UK, the three most popular flavours on foodservice menus were: gingerbread, salted caramel and marshmallow
* Sweet Nostalgia - In this time of uncertainty, beverages inspired by traditional flavours bring familiarity and comfort to consumers. Gingerbread is the leading flavour in the festive flavour category across the UK, Ireland, Germany, Netherlands, Poland, Russia and Sweden. And in the UK and Ireland, eggnog and marshmallow made their top five debut in 2020, highlighting how important nostalgia is as a trend. (See Notes to editors for 2020 Top Ten Festive Flavours in UK & Ireland)
* Vegan Influencer - Vegan and dairy free indulgence continues its popularity with many outlets offering plant-based milks and vegan alternatives to favourite festive beverages.
Karl Buiks, vice president for foodservice, marketing & strategic planning for Kerry Taste & Nutrition, said: “As the foodservice industry goes through a period of momentous change, this market analysis highlights the fantastic opportunities that exist for foodservice operators to unlock consumer demand during this unprecedented season.
“Our purpose at Kerry is to inspire food and nourish life and as one of the world’s leading taste and nutrition companies, this is a major focus for us.
“We’re delighted to be able to share the findings of this in-depth research and make predictions for future development of Festive Beverages for the 2021 festive seasonal period.”
The report also looks ahead and makes predictions for festive beverage trends for the 2021 festive season:
* The Power of Social Media - Getting word out about LTOs on social media not only helps to drive sales from existing consumers, but also can attract new consumers through positive word of mouth including comments, likes and shares. And the more ‘Instagrammable’ LTOs are with decorative toppings, colours and other USPs, the more awareness can be driven.
* Brand Partnerships - Leveraging the power of iconic brands help LTOs perform well on taste and have strong pre-existing consumer awareness.
* Comfort & Nostalgia - A key trend for 2020 given these times of uncertainty, comfort and nostalgia looks set to continue well into 2021. Delivering familiarity and warmth with flavours such as eggnog, marshmallow and the continued dominance of gingerbread.
Conor Keville, foodservice assistant marketing manager at Kerry Taste & Nutrition, adds: “Available from the beginning of November, festive Limited Time Offerings (LTO) beverages appear frequently on menus and they remain popular with consumers around the world.
“Given the opportunity the seasonal festive beverage market continues to deliver for foodservice brands, we really wanted to help our customers understand the favourite festive flavours and growing trends and in turn be able to evolve their businesses to meet consumers’ changing expectations.”