The Evolution (or De-Evolution) Of Fourth Of July Fare

LOS ANGELES , July 3, 2018 () – When it came to food, the Fourth of July holiday was generally as cut and dry as it got. Hamburgers, hot dogs, corn on the cob, chips, ice cream, soda, one more hot dog for the road, and food coma.

This was the way it always was, so one would be forgiven for thinking this was the way it would always be. If it ain’t broke, why fix it, right?

But over the past couple of Fourth of Julys, I’ve noticed the “natural,” “organic” and “clean label” trends seep into my reality of what Independence Day food should be. It started innocently enough: “Hey, I got this corn on the cob at the Farmers Market!” OK fine. And then before you knew it:

“This ice cream only has five ingredients!”

“Oh, you only have Pepsi? You don’t have any natural soda?”

“These hot dogs have no nitrites!”

And suddenly, the Fourth of July food I knew was fading away into a cloud of healthier eating.

Look, I get it. Things change. Back in the day, there was less of a focus on what was actually in your food, especially on holidays. But today, people are more health-conscious. So I suppose it was only a matter of time before it took over Independence Day. Like the aliens in that movie starring Will Smith and Jeff Goldblum, only the health-conscious takeover is actually proving successful.

So as I prepare for tomorrow, I can’t help but wonder what other changes I see? Chips infused with natural oil and made with beets? Appetizers that feature kale instead of onion dip? My precious soda replaced with some sort of sparkling nonsense that tastes like bad mouthwash?

The end of an era is coming. Independence Day no longer means burgers and dogs. It means plant-based and soy.

Nevin Barich is the Food and Beverage Analyst for Industry Intelligence, which can help YOU better address your own industry challenges. We invite you to come take a look at our service. Call us today at 310-553-0008 and we’ll schedule you for a 15-minute demo.

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