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Let’s Talk Expo East Trends

September 26, 2023

Last Expo East ever? Welp, it was a goodie. Every year we see trends rise and fall, with a few that get us truly excited. Here are the top three takeaways that made our band of hooligans pumped to embrace 2024 in the wellness world:

Longevity & Healthspan: This conversation is truly inspiring. Consumers are starting to look beyond just living longer; they want to live better, fuller, healthier lives. We’ve seen mainstream media embrace the healthspan conversation with hits like Netflix’s Live to 100: Secrets of the Blue Zones and Peter Attia’s New York Times bestseller, Outlive. To cater to this demand, numerous exhibitors at Expo East championed this trend. Products like Cognitive Switch by Juvenescence and supplements for humans and pets by Life Extension go beyond “healthy,” into expanding your LIFE and its quality. And Blue Zones Kitchen even has the great fortune of riding the wave of conversation sparked by the Netflix special. Our industry is often known for creating better-for-you versions of bad-for-you food. But what’s truly exciting now is the creation of products that improve quality of life, for longer.

Clean Baking: As health-conscious consumers continue to seek better alternatives to traditional baked goods, clean baking remains a super prominent trend at Expo East. Brands like Rip Van showcased snacks with over 80% less sugar than other treats; Outstanding Foods debuted cookies with functional ingredients like protein and vitamins; Equii displayed bread packed with protein and reduced sugar and carbs; and Catalina Crunch sampled their huge array of keto-friendly cookies, snacks and cereals. And Brazi Bites showed up and showed out with the ultimate innovation, by turning their cheese bread into waffles! There’s no question consumers continue to clamor for their sweet fix while maintaining their healthy lifestyle, and these brands are positioned to jump right into their carts. 

Fruit: Yeah, this one is kind of meta. Fruit, the original natural food, is trending in natural food. This Expo East truly celebrated the natural sweetness of fruits like never before. We’re talking dates, figs, fruits, juices, you name it. The trend of using naturally sweet fruit as a key ingredient in snacks and beverages was evident throughout the event and aligns with consumers’ desires for clean ingredient profiles without sacrificing flavor. Special shoutout to Joolies, Date Better, Solely, and Rind for showcasing the versatility of fruits in creating satisfying and healthier products. 

While closing a chapter, Expo East 2023 also offered a glimpse into the future of natural foods. Like, maybe there’s more to life than being really, ridiculously good-looking? Maybe it’s actually about how long and how well we can stay on this crazy ride. We’re here for that convo.