FNCE 2016 Food Trends Summed Up in 3 Words


As I mentioned in a prior post, I recently attended FNCE, the dietitian national conference. Since FNCE stands for Food & Nutrition Conference & Expo, it seems silly not to mention the Food Expo portion of my week. While many of my colleagues have gone into greater depth about the expo and trends, I am going to sum up the FNCE 2016 Food Trends in 3 words: beans, nuts, and guts.

It’s Just the Bean-ginning

If you thought beans were just an accessory on Mexican meals, then hold on to your sombreros. Beans are about to push kale aside as The Superfood that Must Be in Everything. Sure, high in protein and fiber, these little nuggets deserve a place at the adult table. And with 2016 declared the International Year of Pulses, these guys are going to keep their New Year’s Eve partying well into the new year.  From dried bean snacks to flours to pasta to bars, there will be no escaping beans in 2017.  Check out options from Explore Cuisine, Banza, Biena, and Enlightened.

FNCE 2016 Food Trends


See also: Trendspotting at FNCE: 7 Hot Food Trends from the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics’ 2016 Food & Nutrition Conference & Expo

You Ain’t Seen Nut-ing Yet

If you haven’t heard that nuts are a great source of plant-based protein, then it’s time to come out of your shell. These trendsetters are high in healthy fats, fiber, vitamin E and super-satisfying.  Nuts and seeds will be making a greater appearance in your foods, and more mealtime recipes are featuring nuts and seeds playing starring roles. When it comes to nuts and seeds, it’s time to step beyond the bar and go against the granola.  More nut-spiration coming to the recipe page soon! Have nut allergies? Check out options from Sunbutter and Enjoy Life.

FNCE 2016 Food Trends

No Guts, No Glory

Probiotics were a major theme of FNCE 2015. And this year these good bacteria are multiplying so much they were given their own area of the Expo center! 2017 is all about spreading the word of the 12th organ system, known as the Microbiome. Many chronic diseases are being tied to gut health, and food companies are jumping on this trend. Last year launched Regular Girl, a unique pre & probiotic supplement that is odorless and tasteless. Along for the ride are lactose-intollerant-friendly ice creams, such as Brio!, and Gut Shots from Farmhouse Culture. Familiar with FODMAPs? Don’t worry- it’ll be the new package labeling trend in 2017 (more on FODMAPs in a future post).

FNCE 2016 Food Trends

An entire section dedicated to guts!

Ice cream probiotic sundae, please!

Ice cream probiotic sundae, please!

My nails match my probiotics!

My nails match my probiotics!

FNCE 2016 Food Trends

Regular Girls do regular things

Related Post: FNCE 2015: New Food Trends to Try Together


Prior to becoming a dietitian, my experience with professional conferences was creating marketing materials and designing booths for pharmaceutical companies.  From diabetes to cystic fibrosis, no one blinked an eye at the large pharma companies present at these events.  Yet publications like Time scrutinized the vendors present at the Expo.  Those of you who were not present at FNCE or in the biz need to do a little more research and don’t, as Yale University’s Dr. David Katz says, “eat the headlines”.  For more insights into this issue, check out my colleague Lauren Harris-Pincus’s response.

2016 FNCE Food Trends

Which FNCE 2016 Food Trends knock it out of the park? What food trends are you on board with, and which are you over?

Sound off in the Comments!

FNCE 2016 Food Trends

DISCLAIMER: All opinions are my own and are not influenced or biased by any third parties. I am not compensated for mentioning any specific brands or retailers on this blog, however I do serve as an affiliate for several retailers, which may pay me a small compensation for referrals and allows me to keep this website and blog active for you and future readers.

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