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Justin Massa
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Justin Massa

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Justin Massa

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Given the staggering increase in year-over-year sales, one might expect there to be a corresponding uptick of mentions of chocolate hazelnut spread on menus, but in fact the number of menus that mention chocolate hazelnut spread has remained right around 2 percent of all menus for the past year and a half.

“Artisanal toast is taking the nation by storm,” reads a recent headline from Eater.com. Meanwhile, Food Genius reports that less than 1 percent of nearly 60 million menu items mention the word “toast.” That’s quite a discrepancy. How can something that is supposedly taking the nation by storm be listed as a menu item less than 1 percent of the time?

Any food blog worth its (sea) salt would likely consider quinoa a passé trend. The sun has set on the protein-packed grain as quickly as it rose, and its trendy status has recently been handed off to sexier ancient grains like chia and farro.

Despite having major online presence, many “trendy” foods don’t make much of a dent on menus, which begs the question: What makes a trend a trend?