This time of year we're all clairvoyant: Everybody is summing up the past and predicting the foodie future, including moi (look for my column next Wednesday here). My inbox is full of this kind of hocus pocus and mumbo jumbo, most recently the Food Network's top 10 predictions for 2009 in food. They evidently developed this list by commissioning a group called The World Thought Bank (this is the company I hope to work for in 2009 -- they actually define a "thought" as "an individual piece of information captured by a user and stored in the neemee [TM] World Thought bank"). Most of it, we've heard already in other forums, but to summarize:
More people will be cooking at home, and doing it better;
food communities will continue to grow (hear that, Chowhounds);
kitchens will be more eco-conscious (I guess we'll all be recycling our Zip-Locs);
we'll be eating like locavores (wasn't this a big trend in 2007?);
bioengineering and genetic modification will continue to make strides (um, also not exactly news?);
food philanthropy will increase as individuals and companies try to combat world hunger;
there'll be a bigger push for controls on food safety (hear that, China?);
a bigger gap between "exotic" foods and "day to day" needs (just like the widening gap between the uberwealthy and the unemployed, I guess).
And then, to make it an even 10 I suppose (because we so love our numbered lists) the Food Network sandwiches in some questions that aren't really predictions at all. I feel so cheated. Viz; Is putting the calorie counts on everything too much information? And, Where in the world will the next flavor trend come from?
Uh, I don't know, Food Network, I thought you were supposed to be telling us what the trends were. Anyhoo, I found this list pretty yawn-inducing, and I hereby invite readers to submit their own trends for 2009, since I PREDICT that as a group you could do much better than the above, without even having to pay the the World Thought Bank [TM] a few thousand million to do a study or anything. Cheers!