At culture, cheese is always trending, but in 2023 it felt like the rest of the world was finally giving cheese the attention it deserved. Burrata broke the [cheese] internet, charcuterie boards continued to dominate social media feeds, and the New York housewives gave us cheese-gate. Cheese consumption hit an all-time high in 2022 and shows no signs of slowing down as we collectively lean into comfort during uncertain times.
We’ve scoured the internet and consulted the experts to come up with our 2024 cheese trend predictions. From nostalgic pairings and bold and swicy flavors, to cheese travels and inventive pasta, 2024 is shaping up to be an exceptionally cheesy year.
Nostalgia is back, and it’s not limited to low-rise jeans and baby tees. Cheese has entered its retro era and we are here for it. We’ve been seeing a rise in 70s-inspired fondue and raclette motifs, Spam and cheese pairings, and even the return of aspic at this year’s Cheesemonger Invitational. With all the uncertainty and turbulence over the last several years, it’s no wonder brands and creators are turning to nostalgia to evoke comfort and familiarity. Expect to see cheese applications that are cozy and casual, instead of sparse and complex.
Love it or hate it, flavored cheese is here to stay. Kaitie Hackett, category manager at Emmi Roth, told Dairy Processing that unique flavors have helped generate excitement and drive growth for the category. In 2024 there will be continued flavor innovation—beyond blueberry goat logs and truffle gouda. Expect to see global flavors and lots of spicy, complex heat. We’re also expecting to see even more culture crossover, like kimchee and cheese pairings and Indian food featuring Parmigiano Reggiano, as third culture cuisine grows.
As we collectively experience climate dread, the pressure to purchase environmentally conscious products has never been greater. Consumers are seeking out information on packaging and third-party certifications to weigh the environmental impacts of food products. Cheesemakers will continue to practice and tout their regenerative farming practices, eco-conscious packaging, and alternative energy sources—like the anaerobic digester at Crave Brothers Farmstead Cheese.
Next year we’re going to see pasta everywhere, but not just staples like bolognese and cacio e pepe. Expect to see new pasta shapes—Datassential predicts Cresto di Gallo will be the “it” pasta shape of 2024—and a resurgence of forgotten classics like the Ravioles du Dauphiné from Café Chelsea that took the internet by storm earlier this year. While pasta is not technically a cheese trend, we included it because if you give a mouse some pasta, he’ll probably ask for some cheese.
As post-pandemic revenge travel rages on, travelers are seeking out chef-lead trips and immersive culinary experiences. In 2023 Anna Juhl’s Cheese Journeys celebrated its tenth year, meanwhile, we saw several new cheese travel concepts take flight. Marissa Mullen launched That Cheese Plate travels, Carlos Yescas’ Cheese Spelunker embarked on its second round of tours, and Rachel Frier launched The Cheese Club, a global travel platform for cheese lovers.
Renewed Focus on Artisan Product Lines
When it comes to cheesemakers, we’ve read the veins in the blue (shout out to Tyromancy) and are predicting a renewed focus on legacy and artisan product lines. For a while, it seemed like the goal of artisan cheesemaking was to grow as big as possible, develop name recognition, and then dedicate resources to commodity and specialty product lines. In 2024, we’re predicting a return to legacy product lines as consumers spend more on little luxuries and makers lean into their niches. Curt Alpeter, newly appointed CEO of Grafton Village Cheese, said the Vermont cheesemaker is planning to grow its line of cave aged cheeses, including Storyteller, Sheepsog, and Bear Hill.
Print is Back!
We may be a bit biased on this one, but we’re predicting 2024 will bring a renewed interest in print media! In response to the constant barrage of information online, Gen Z is increasingly turning to print as a curated and trustworthy information source. With legacy publications like Saveur returning to print and culture’s refresh, we’re feeling pretty confident about the future of print media.