Hannah Jantos
October 7, 2022

The Top 5 Australian Food Trends We’re Expecting to See in 2023

People in the post-Covid world are looking for interesting alternatives rather than just a standard dinner.

LikeMeat fake meat on grill with bbq onions

Sustainability and technology continue to become more widespread and popular. Staff shortages are still high. International students are trickling back slowly, but not fast enough to fill all of the positions needed. People in the post-Covid world are looking for interesting alternatives rather than just a standard dinner. The way that Australians are consuming and experiencing food will continue to evolve into 2023, and here are the trends we’re expecting to see.

1. Sustainability

2022 saw a rise in a range of sustainable innovations, such as the Good Edi cup made in Melbourne. Working to battle the 1 billion takeaway cups that are sent to landfill each year in Australia, Good Edi has created an edible cup that is a sustainable and eco-friendly alternative to a takeaway cup. Good Edi isn’t the only edible packaging out there, with many start-ups creating 100% edible and biodegradable packaging options to combat the 1.9 billion tonnes of waste produced by Australians each year. Of course, not all edible packaging options are designed to be actually eaten once you’ve consumed the item you purchased; edible packaging means that it breaks down a lot faster once disposed of, or can be eaten by any wildlife that comes across it, rather than ending up with turtles tangled in plastic.

With all of this in mind, in 2023 we expect to see more Australian-based companies coming up with a wider range of edible packaging options, and we hope to see eco-friendly brands like Good Edi become the norm in more local cafes and restaurants.

2. Technology

Continuing staff shortages in a post-pandemic world and the lack of international students that usually fill a lot of essential roles have led to the rise of automation technologies in cafes, restaurants, and bars across Australia. Restaurants such as Dodee Paidang Thai in Melbourne are using robot waiters, called Bellabots, as to serve food. The robots take the food straight from the kitchen to tables, reducing the number of staff needed to run food. While each robot costs approximately $24,000 to buy, restaurant owners can rent them for only $48 a day, which is equivalent to approximately 2 hours of wages for a staff member.

As more jobs become available with fewer applicants than ever, we expect this trend will continue to rise in 2023. By helping hospitality owners keep staff costs to a minimum, we’re expecting to see robots and other automation technologies in more and more venues – although it will be interesting to see what kind of impact this will have on those looking for work in an economy where automation is cheaper than manual labour.

3. Ghost kitchens

Another way that businesses are tackling rising operating costs is through ghost kitchens. Ghost kitchens basically give restaurants the opportunity to prepare food without a brick-and-mortar restaurant to serve it in – they usually operate completely online. As consumers are straying away from delivery services due to high fees and long delivery times (by which point, your food is usually cold and soggy), they are opting to place orders directly with restaurants. Ghost kitchens provide a scenario where everyone wins – more businesses can keep their (figurative) doors open due to lower costs, and more people can enjoy a quality meal at home.

Following this trend, unless the costs of running a business with staff becomes a whole lot more affordable in 2023, we might see more and more businesses choosing to operate purely in the online world.

4. Plant-based

If you haven’t got the memo yet, plant-based and vegan eating have been dominating the food scene. Beyond meat burger patties and mock-meat dishes have not only given vegan and vegetarian people a wider range of options when it comes to dining out, but also give non-vegans and vegetarians the chance to try out a plant-based diet. From mock meats and plant-based proteins to a range of alternative milk options including potato milk, plant-based eating gives people more options than ever before.

We’re expecting 2023 to continue to expand the range of possibilities and options in the plant-based space. Whether that looks like milk made from turnips or a new variety of mock meat, we’re excited to see more plant-based options in more restaurants and supermarkets, making it more accessible for everyone.

5. Booze-free booze

The trend towards drinking less continues to rise and is becoming more popular among young people. It’s easier than ever to find alcohol-free beer, wine, pre-mixed cocktails, and spirits – helping a wide range of people find alternatives that work for them. Emerging onto the scene are brands like celebrity-owned brand Kin Euphorics, co-founded by supermodel Bella Hadid which uses adaptogens and nootropics to help boost mood and brainpower; and Australian-owned brand Naked Life Spirits which creates your favourite cocktails minus the alcohol for any occasion.

As trends in the health space continue to merge into mainstream culture, we can expect to see continued shifts towards drinking less and finding alternative options, and in 2023 we hope to see more bars and restaurants offer a range of different alcohol-free options, rather than just your standard choice between a non-alcoholic beer or a lemon, lime and bitters.

In 2023, sustainability, plant-based food, wellness-based eating and drinking, responses to environmental concerns, and innovative technologies will continue to change the way we consume and view food. Society is rapidly changing, it just makes sense that the food industry is rapidly evolving alongside it. What are your predictions for 2023?

This article was written by one of our Social Media Co-ordinators and blog writers, Hannah Jantos.