Times Change - Macphie

2024 is set to be a(nother) year of change.

In recent years, numerous events have occurred which have impacted consumers’ lives. The COVID pandemic was the main driving force. With the nation stuck at home, behaviours, attitudes, procedures, and ultimately lifestyles were impacted. The implementation of working from home swooped throughout the UK, but despite guidance being scrapped soon after, not everyone rushed back to the office. In fact, as many as 1 in 3 still work from home or are hybrid between work and home.

The cost-of-living crisis which followed soon after also led to major adjustments in people’s lives, the impact of which is still happening. Cheaper alternatives are being explored, and in some circumstances sacrificial changes are being made.

As a result of all of this, revolutionary changes are taking place in consumers’ consumption of food. No longer does the traditional Brit have a fixed schedule where they do the school run, go into the office between 9 and 5, and do their hobbies in the evening. Every day is different for most, and this has had a direct impact on food consumption.

Mealtimes are blending and cross-pollinating, and the boundaries between have blurred. Just 41% of Brits still consume the three traditional meals, with those who don’t saying the idea of eating three main meals a day is outdated.

Breakfast in particular is no longer limited to the first bite of the day – consumers are now enjoying breakfast items midmorning (known as brunch) or even at lunchtime and dinner (known as brinner). This was exacerbated during the cost-of-living crisis, as people began looking for less expensive options to eat out, and brunch rose in popularity.

Items such as waffles, eggs and pancakes have broken free from the breakfast menu and are now becoming all-day staples.

Eggs Benedict is one of the most popular brunch recipes, but by making a couple of amendments and additions, it can be transformed into a more substantial meal which can be enjoyed later in the day. Add to a burger to create a Burgerdict, serve with lobster for a premium dish, or even add a little spice for Middle Eastern inspired Eggs Benedict.

Croissants with various fillings are a popular brunch option, but have you ever tried steak, cheese, and egg croissants? By adding Macphie Nacho Cheese Sauce, you can create a delicious savoury delight.

All day breakfast has been around for a considerable time, but now we are seeing versions, such as this all-day breakfast bruschetta, which are lighter and can command a price premium.

We are even seeing pizza, one of the nation’s favourite treats, having a breakfast transformation, meaning it can be enjoyed right throughout the day. This egg and bacon pizza for example is a simple breakfast innovation.

And waffles can be enjoyed at any time in the day by swapping the toppings. Add bacon or eggs for a brunch bite, chicken for a linner (lunch for dinner), or our o.t.t® dessert topping for a luxurious dessert.

Flexible and irregular schedules have also led to consumers being ‘snackified’. Back in the day, snacking was discouraged, and something which children did. Nowadays, people are snacking for many different reasons, including to relieve stress, nourishment, or to eat in between a busy schedule. As many as 95% of the UK snack in between meals, with 1 in 3 substituting snacks for a third meal of the day.

With snackification taking over the UK, we are beginning to see new and adventurous snacks coming to the fore. Doughnuts are a much-loved pick me up snack, but variations are now being created such as cereal doughnuts (ideal for brunch), avocado doughnuts (a healthy twist), and even fried chicken doughnuts (which taps into the growing swavoury trend).

Crumpets are a classic British treat, but why not drizzle Macphie Nacho Cheese Sauce over the top to add a twist to your elevenses snack.

Alternatively, why not create hybrid sweet treats by combining our Flapjack Mix, Mississippi Muffin & Cake Mix and Luxury Salted Caramel Filling to create Fluffins, or add cookie dough bites to our new Brownie Mix for Brookies.

Not only are meal patterns changing and evolving, but so are consumers’ tastes and social awareness. Nowadays, there is a greater demand for plant-based products. Not only are people more health conscious, but they are also more aware of the impact food has on the climate.

One in four people in the UK have reduced their consumption of animal products since the beginning of the COVID pandemic. This shift is mainly being driven by the younger generations, who are making environmentally friendly changes in order to counteract climate change. As Gen Z’s grow into their full purchasing power, we are beginning to see the plant-based market grow, and demand is predicted to continue growing in the coming years.

It is important that restaurants, bakeries and QSR’s have plant-based alternatives in order to feed the demand. Our plant-based range, which features Plant-based Taco Sauce, Plant-based Cream Alternative, o.t.t® dessert toppings and Meat-free Sausage Roll Concentrate, can produce a wide range of offerings suitable for changing appetites.

A further 25% of people in the UK now identify as flexitarian, meaning they mainly eat plant-based foods. The Macphie plant-based range helps you cater for this as well as ensuring you do not have to have separate lines in your store cupboards as they work brilliantly with both plant-based and meat recipes.

For example, our Plant-based Taco Sauce works on both feta and couscous tacos as well as steak tacos, and our Plant-based Demi-Glace is just as delicious poured over a burger as it is in a jackfruit bao bun.

Consumers’ evolving lifestyles have caused uncertainty for bakers and chefs, as people are no longer eating meals at conventional times. Operators need versatile ingredients that work all day long, capable of delivering a variety of tasty foods at all hours. Thankfully, that’s exactly what we do!

Our products are versatile and work across all day parts, which means you can rely on Macphie for ingredients which will work across several dishes, for any time of the day, whether that is breakfast, brunch, lunch, linner, dinner, brinner… or just a snack for in-between times!

For recipe inspiration visit: www.macphie.com/recipe-categories/times-change

Times are changing – be ready.