Lessons Learned from 2020 and Industry Predictions for 2021

When it comes to the year 2020, where do we begin? So much has happened, and so much has changed. An unprecedented world pandemic turned the entire foodservice industry on its head, but it also taught us some valuable lessons. Unexpected trends and adaptations fueled innovations that will carry through into 2021 and beyond. 

So, while we wouldn’t jump at the chance to repeat 2020 anytime soon, we are grateful to be standing strong on the other side, and we’re optimistic for the future. Here’s what we’ve seen over the past year in the food industry and what we expect to see through the rest of 2021.

Discovering the Chef Within

With quarantine measures in place, the average Joes and Janes of the world became acquainted with their kitchens. For too many people, cooking is a lost art — or a skill they never took the time to find in the first place. Being stuck at home opened up an opportunity to explore the amazing world of food by trying new recipes and new foods. Baking bread, pickling, preserving, and canning foods are more popular than they have been in decades.

Luckily for those of us at Gills Onions, the tried and true produce of the world wasn’t forgotten. After all, an onion is a healthy, flavorful, and versatile ingredient. Every time someone purchased produce to cook their next meal, they supported farmers and producers across our nation. Thanks for cooking!

Prioritizing Health and Sustainability 

With or without a pandemic, you always need to eat more veggies. That’s a sentiment that both foodservice and individual consumers took to heart over the last year. Plant-based diets continue to be on the rise with a focus on health boosting trends like CBD products, herbal pharmaceuticals, kombucha drinks, and, of course, plant-based proteins. 

We also saw greater concern for sustainability and a focus on the environment. As a society, we were able to take a step back and really think about how our personal choices affect those around us, our planet included. 

Sustainability is at the heart of everything we do at Gills Onions, so we are excited for the opportunity to share our mission with even more audiences. In 2021, we anticipate a trend toward more interest in where food comes from and how it is grown. By encouraging widespread use of conscious farming practices, we can all work together for a healthier planet while improving our personal health as well. 

The Evolution of Delivery 

When rising numbers of COVID-19 cases forced foodservice closures and put indoor dining on notice across the world, restaurants and grocery stores had to adapt. The shift from indoor dining to delivery, takeout, drive-thru services, and ghost kitchens allowed our industry to rise from the ashes. Even though many retail food establishments continue to struggle, delivery options have become a viable way to keep doors open. 

Before the pandemic, grocery store pick up and delivery was a trend many expected to take off. We never could have predicted how quickly these services would become essential for many Americans. 

At Gills Onions, we’ve had to adapt to the changing landscape, too. We’re committed to helping our customers as they reopen and providing them with the same great service — and great onions — as we always have. Whether you’re back to indoor dining, keeping it outdoors, or still relying on takeout and delivery, we’ll be there to save you time and money with high quality, value-added produce.

Lingering Lockdown Habits

As we look to the future, we hope that many of the good habits and attitudes developed during lockdown will carry on. Knowing where your food comes from and being conscious about what you eat is so important for physical health and for our environment. While 2020 was a difficult year, it also took us back to our roots and reminded us why food is so wonderful to begin with. 

Here’s to a new normal in 2021!

Ready to try onions grown “The Gill Way”? Contact our sales department to learn more.