Current market assessments strongly suggest that seafood consumption will rise year over year. According to Foodable Labs, food influencers have increased their references to seafood by 24.7 percent—a surge larger than any other protein. Consumers under the age of 40 now constitute almost 40 percent of the United States, and they are searching for new types of protein that are nutritious, responsibly sourced, and carefully prepared.
At the last Foodable.io event in Seattle, Paul Barron hosted a panel discussing the latest seafood trends with three rising chefs in the industry: Keith Brunell, corporate chef at retail and food and beverage giant Nordstrom, Derek Simcik, the executive chef at rooftop bar Scout and The Nest (part of the boutique hotel Thompson Seattle), and Lionel Uddipa, the chef de cuisine for new American restaurant Salt in Juneau, Alaska.
Sustainability is no longer a trend: for many restaurants, it is becoming a necessity and an integral part of day-to-day operations. More and more customers want to know where products come from and how they are sourced and handled—and they want to keep the flavor compositions simple and truly taste the fish itself. Customization and accommodation options also popular to ensure that every consumer receives a dish that meets the needs of their preferred diet.
“As far as the cooking technique, we don’t do a lot. We try to serve the dish in its most purest form,” says Uddipa. “We’ve learned that if you have a story associated with the dish, the customer tends to pinpoint that. They understand and are amazed by the vision and the creation that went into the dish.”
To learn more about the latest trends and educating both consumers and cooks regarding seafood preparation, listen to the full episode of the podcast above.