Classic Blue: Pantone’s color for 2020 taps into industry trend for naturality
06 Dec 2019 --- Pantone has hailed “Classic Blue” as its color of the year for 2020 in line with a rising industry trend for vibrant blue hues and cerulean tints in food and beverage applications. Consumer demand for intense colors that excite the senses is driving the trend, boosted by an added demand for naturality. Industry is increasingly looking for lively colors that occur naturally and can support clean label status.
“The Classic Blue seems to be a perfect fit to this moment in time; the hue is suitable for brands that are looking for an opportunity to return to classics and reinterpreting food and beverage concepts, made for people in all walks of life,” Erica Franco, Regional Marketing Manager, Natural Colors EMEA for Chr. Hansen, tells FoodIngredientsFirst.
“Additionally, its indigo shade can be achieved naturally from spirulina and huito, both natural sources in our shade portfolio, making it a color that aligns well with the sustainability movement, echoing last year’s concentrated focus on sustainability with the selection of Living Coral as the 2019 Color of the Year,” she adds.
“Timeless and elegant”
Pantone’s 19-4052 Classic Blue is appropriately named as it is a “timeless classic blue color, elegant in its simplicity.” The color blue is often associated with spirituality and it is often used in color therapy to induce emotions of calmness and peace. Naturally linked to the sky and the sea, classic blue can dispel negative emotions and stimulate productivity. However, previous studies have shown hues such as green and blue may also curb appetite.
In the era of social media however, foods are increasingly expected to deliver on a visual level. Millennials and Gen Z-ers opt for “Instagrammable” foods that deliver visually as much as they do in taste.
Industry is echoing the trend and according to a forecast made by GNT Group, “Shades of Aqua” will be a key food and beverage color trend for 2020. Vivid blue and green hues in food are set to drive innovation as consumers seek products that “reconnect them with nature,” says the supplier of Exberry Coloring Foods. “We see an increased need for natural ingredients that are clean and clear label,” Maartje Hendrickx, GNT’s Market Development Manager, tells FoodIngredientsFirst at Fi Europe 2019 in Paris.
The demand for Shades of Aqua will also be powered by a quest for holistic wellbeing and a demand for new and unique food and beverage experiences that will stand out when shared on social media, says GNT.
Pantone, which began as a commercial printing company in the 1950s before turning into a bonafide color expert, has been picking its top color annually since the year 2000. Through seasonal trend forecasts, color psychology and color consulting, the Pantone Color Institute partners with global brands to leverage the power, psychology and emotion of color in their design strategy. For 20 years, Pantone’s Color of the Year has influenced product development and purchasing decisions in multiple industries, including fashion, home furnishings and industrial design, as well as product, packaging and graphic design. Past selections for Color of the Year include: 2019: Living Coral; 2018: Ultra Violet; 2017: Greenery; 2016: Serenity and 2015: Rose Quartz.
Got the blues?
An array of industry players are also tapping into the blue trend. At Fi Europe, Stefan Lander, Vice President COG for Omya International notes how the blue trend is inspiring innovation, which has led to an increased demand for algae ingredients. “Spirulina is in high demand and it is proving very difficult to keep up with supply and demand,” he says.
GNT also developed a new range of blue powders derived from spirulina with significantly high color intensity. Spirulina is a blue-green algae, valued for its coloring and nutritional properties and is widely and safely consumed globally.
berry product as Anuga 2019, which can offer a vibrant blue color to dairy applications. Speaking to FoodIngredientsFirst from the Anuga show floor earlier this year, Kay Schumacher, Team Lead Product Application & Development, explains that naturality in ingredients is a major consumer demand. The berry ingredient presented at the show also boasts a transparent supply chain, beyond being an all-natural coloring agent for dairy.Bösch Boden Spies trialed a new
Naturex, part of Givaudan, spearheaded the trend back in March with the launch of Vegebrite Ultimate Spirulina, which was also on show at Fi Europe. A new extraction line, which triples spirulina production capacity, was introduced at the company’s production site in Avignon, France. This expansion of Naturex’s manufacturing capacity has been designed to meet the growing global demand for clean label blues and greens.
“The natural color landscape is constantly evolving,” says Nathalie Pauleau, Global Product Manager for Colors. “Natural colors are now a prerequisite in many countries around the world. But health-conscious consumers want to go even further in their quest for transparency and must be provided with fully clean formulations, as minimally processed as possible.”
Color trends are ever-changing and can inspire industry to innovate toward more visually appealing NPD. From naturality to supply source transparency demands, as well as “Instagrammability,” vibrant colors can help boost sales and serve as an easy marketing point. It remains to be seen how Classic Blue will influence the industry.
By Kristiana Lalou
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