Emerging Chicken Trends

As the holiday season approaches and consumers prepare to ramp up their spending, we’re ready to arm you to the teeth with trend knowledge that will keep you top of mind for busy diners.

First up: packaging and messaging trends. In our last blog post, we showed the importance of free-from labels and the demand that they bring. We’re seeing a boost in several packaging and messaging trends, such as minimalist designs and messaging, and a push for more health- and performance-minded labels. To capitalize on this trend, think of clear and simple messaging that will help you connect with fatigued consumers: displaying animal welfare, sustainable practices, human certifications, and promoting nutritional boosts will all fit the bill. This goes for menu and daily fare boards in restaurant and foodservice settings as well—make the info they want to know about the food you serve front and center.

Adaptability is another emerging trend with consumers; this means grilled, broiled, and smoked poultry will win out over more unusual pre-seasoned varieties as consumers look for products they can adapt for multiple uses. As we enter into another season with unpredictable product availability, this trend will likely trickle down as the ability to pivot meal plans will become an important deciding factor for both home chefs and operators.

Optimistic and environmentally conscious products and sourcing are ranking high on consumers' list of desires. More respectful and resourceful use of water is becoming a priority for consumers and companies, and operators can jump on the trend by choosing environmentally conscious products and suppliers. New on the trend list, yet still in the realm of environmentally friendly, are food products that help consumers express their support for sustainable practices. Supporting causes and working with vendors who use sustainable practices can go a long way with certain consumer audiences.

Overall, consumers this season are on the hunt for good value paired with tasty flavors. Mintel’s forward-looking Poultry Assessment analysis has shown that these categories (value and taste) represent the highest correlation to purchase intent. Fully cooked and fresh poultry categories are set to be the most sought after categories in 2023, and with the above trends emerging, we can see why. Fully cooked chicken options are easily adaptable to any menu need, and options for sustainably sourced products are virtually endless.

The way forward for operators in 2023? Classic flavors, simple, straightforward messaging, and environmentally optimistic practices—these upcoming trends are all easy for operators to utilize this holiday season without reconstructing their menu or tactics.