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Chef survey reveals top menu trends for 2010


March 25, 2010
By Bakers Journal

March 25, 2010, TORONTO – Local, sustainable and organic food choices top the list of what’s hot in Canada’s restaurant kitchens. The trends are revealed in a new survey of professional chefs conducted for the Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association (CRFA).

The chefs were asked to rate a variety of menu items and cooking methods as either a "hot trend," "yesterday’s news," or "perennial favourite." Here are the top picks for 2010:
 
Top 10 Canadian Menu Trends
 
Locally sourced food
Sustainability
Organic produce
Artisanal cheeses
Simplicity / Back to basics
Nutritional / healthy cuisine
Free-range poultry / pork
Small plates / tapas / mezze / dim sum
Bite size / mini desserts
Superfruits (e.g. acai, goji berry, mangosteen)
 
The CRFA survey also asked chefs to identify "up and comers" that are poised to be the next hot trend:
 
Top 10 Up and Coming Canadian Menu Trends 

 
Ancient grains (e.g. kamut, spelt, amaranth)
Gluten-free beer
Vegan entrées
Organic alcohol
African cuisine
New / fabricated cuts of meat
Gluten-free cuisine
Middle Eastern cuisine
Quinoa
Non-traditional fish (e.g.branzino, Arctic char, barramundi)
 
“These topline trends underscore a growing restaurant focus on health, nutrition and the environment,” says Garth Whyte, CRFA president and CEO. “Restaurant chefs are not only listening to their customers, they are helping to drive the trend toward health, nutrition and sustainability through innovative menu offerings.”
 
The CRFA Canadian Chef Survey was conducted in cooperation with the Canadian Culinary Federation. Close to 400 professional chefs participated in the survey, which was conducted in January and February 2010 by BrandSpark International, a Canadian market research and brand strategy firm with expertise in the foodservice industry.
 
CRFA is one of Canada's largest business associations, with 33,000 members representing restaurants, bars, caterers, institutions and other foodservice providers. Canada's foodservice industry employs more than one million people in communities across the country.

The goal of the Canadian Culinary Federation (CCF) is to unite chefs and cooks across Canada in a common dedication to professional excellence. The CCF was founded in 1963 and incorporated in Ottawa as a non-profit association in 1972.

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