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Inspired Tastes

Global Heat

December 2019 | Natalie, Insights & Content

Consumers continue to be adventurous in exploring lesser-known parts of the world by pairing favorite foods with regionally famous sauces and spice blends, especially those that add heat. This demand is fueled by an increasingly diverse population, thrill-seeking food shows, and diners’ increasing familiarity with global cuisines. Food companies are taking note of all the hype, eschewing familiar flavors and foods in favor of new spices that attract a younger, more diverse audience.

Why This Trend Will Stick


According to PEW Research, the number of US residents born overseas topped 44 million in 2017 about five times the number in 1970. More than 75% came from countries in Latin America, South Asia or East Asia, Pew data shows. These dynamics have boosted demand for ethnic inspired sauces and stoked wider curiosity among patrons of immigrant-owned restaurants and grocery stores. – WSJ


Global cuisines continue to inspire new flavor innovation, particularly in the form of unique spice and seasoning blends. Look for the newest earthy, smoky, savory and hot spice blends to make inroads on chain menus. -2019 Technomic, Inc., Flavor Consumer Trend Report


Here are the micro-trends we see in this trend:

  • Asian Heat
  • Spicy Africa & Middle Eastern Flavors


  • Look beyond sriracha and jalapeño; there are dozens of sources of inspiration for global hot flavors such as zhug from the Middle East and togarashi from Japan.
  • Just because it is spicy doesn’t mean it can’t be sweet. Sweet dishes such as ice cream can also be a vehicle for delivering the heat and balancing the impact.

To add global heat to your next innovation, contact your McCormick account manager or contact us today.