Flavor Insight: Turmeric

August 1, 2018
Flavor Ingredients Trends
Used as perfume dating back to ancient times, Turmeric is a rhizomatous plant that comes from the ginger family and today is used to flavor and color to food products. It is native to India and Southeast Asia and is commonly used as a coloring and flavoring agent in curries. Turmeric powder has a warm, bitter, pepper-like flavor and an earthy mustard-like aroma. We’re seeing turmeric appear in a host of products and recipes – from a turmeric golden latte to more savory roasted carrots with turmeric and cumin. Let’s take a look at the various forms of turmeric on the menu, in social media, and in new products.

Click here for the full report!


Print & Social Media Highlights

There are several mentions of turmeric in social and print media. Here are some of the highlights.

  • While scrolling through Pinterest, turmeric pins appear in a wide variety of food and beverage recipes but especially savory dishes. These pins include roasted carrots with turmeric and cumin, sweet potato & turmeric hummus, carrot, ginger and turmeric soup, and Mediterranean roast chicken with turmeric and fennel.

  • A Twitter search shows tweets mentioning turmeric, including this one by @freshstalks6 for a “Healing 3-ingredient turmeric tonic via @mimialistbaker.” Also mentioned by @cookinacurry “Delicious Chicken Korma cooked with turmeric, ginger, green, cardamom & chili,” with attached recipe.

  • The November issue of Cooking Light features a 3-day Pretox plan to make room in your diet for favorite holiday indulgences. Included in this plan are recipes for both Turmeric-Roasted Chicken with Farro and Turmeric Chicken-Stuffed Peppers

  • On Genius Kitchen, 56 recipes appear when you search for turmeric. Recipes include turmeric tea, golden turmeric cauliflower and quinoa bowls, stuffed turmeric turkey, turmeric white hot chocolate, turmeric spiced snack crackers, and turmeric glazed beer bratwurst.

Turmeric on the Menu

96 Turmeric Mentions on The Menu

Casual Dining is the top restaurant segment, with entrée, appetizer and sandwiches as the top three menu sections with the most turmeric flavored items. Entrees account for 39% of all turmeric flavored menu items.

Menu Mentions:

  • Turmeric Roasted Cauliflower served with lentils and almonds at BJ’s Restaurant and Brewery.

  • Torched Avocado with cucumber noodles, mushrooms, snap peas, radishes, sesame and turmeric ponzu at True Food Kitchen.

  • Turmeric-Coconut Crispy Cake topped with shrimp, coconut & scallion sauce at Tay Ho.

  • Turmeric Sweet Potato Hummus Toast is house-made turmeric roasted sweet potato hummus on toasted Balthazar bread with salt, pepper, chili flakes and olive oil at Bluestone Lane Coffee.


For nearly 4,000 years, turmeric has been a staple of Indian cuisine and folk medicine. Turmeric contains a compound called curcumin credited by some as an anti-inflammatory, antibacterial, anti-cancer and antioxidant agent. According to the New York Times “Ask Well” section, a few small lab studies on humans have found that it helps with arthritis and some digestion issues. However arger studies are needed to prove conclusive health benefits.

Turmeric Global Product Introductions

832 TURMERIC flavored new product introductions

Global Fast Facts:

  • Europe is the top global region for turmeric new product introductions with 41% of all new products.

  • Seasoning is the top product sub-category globally for turmeric flavored new products.

  • Ginger is the top flavor paired with turmeric.

Top 5 Turmeric Product Categories:

  • Sauces & Seasonings

  • Juice Drinks

  • Hot Beverages

  • Side Dishes

  • Snacks

Products of Note:

Taifun Organic Turmeric Tofu: this soy-based product is suitable for vegans and is oriental inspired and spiced. Italy

Terrasana Positive Eating Curcuma Delight Almonds In White Chocolate: this product is made with turmeric and coconut and is certified organic. Netherlands

Golden Tips Fennel Turmeric Black Tea: it is said to have a perfect taste to reset the metabolism and restore the body’s natural balance to heal itself. India

Bio-Verde Kimchi With Fresh Turmeric: this classic dish from the Korean cuisine is made from fermented pointed cabbage with fresh turmeric. Germany

Turmeric North American Product Introductions

126 TURMERIC flavored new product introductions

North America Fast Facts:

  • North America accounts for 15% of all turmeric flavored new product introductions.

  • Juice is the top product sub-category for turmeric flavored new products.

  • Ginger is the top flavor paired with turmeric.

Top 5 Turmeric Product Categories

  • Juice Drinks

  • Sauces & Seasoning

  • Hot Beverages

  • Other Beverages

  • Snacks

Products of Note

Davids Tea Tomato Turmeric Soup Mix With Green Tea: described as a kosher certified nourishing tomato and green tea broth with turmeric. Canada

Bora's Pantry Cinnamon Turmeric Spiced Fudge: is said to be a unique functional food that can be enjoyed anytime straight from the jar or added to warm almond milk, waffles & pancakes. USA

Living Intentions Tandoori Turmeric Activated Superfood Popcorn: features finely ground spices and 2 billion CFUs of probiotic cultures. USA

Pro & Con: Real Consumers on Tandoori Turmeric Popcorn

It is a superfood and good for you and looks tasty.
-Female, South, 18-34

There have been studies to disprove the turmeric craze.
-Female, South, 35-54

Turmeric Takeaways

Is turmeric right for your product development? With a perceived-to-be-healthy halo, unique color and a taste that packs a punch — it just might be. Turmeric pairs well with ginger, and is proving to be supremely versatile, with introductions spanning beverage, snacks and sauces. Consider in your positioning that the health benefits of turmeric are as of yet unproven. Yet, the taste is proven, especially for adventurous palates.

Click here for the full report!

You Deserve More. Let’s get started.

What does true partnership look like? You deserve a flavor partner ready to turn these trends into the tangible.

Let FONA’s market insight and research experts get to work for you. Translate these trends into bold new ideas for your brand. Increase market share and get to your “what’s next.” Our technical flavor and product development experts are also at your service to help meet the labeling and flavor profile needs for your products to capitalize on this consumer trend. Let’s mesh the complexities of flavor with your brand development, technical requirements and regulatory needs to deliver a complete taste solution.

From concept to manufacturing, we’re here for you — every step of the way. Contact our sales service department at 630.578.8600 to request a flavor sample or chat us up at www.fona.com/contact-fona/