Industry Forecasts You Need To Know For 2020

Industry Forecasts You Need To Know For 2020

Each new year, it’s important to not only know what’s going on in our own business(es) but also the ongoing developments and predictions for the industries and platforms around us. To use as a guide for thinking outside the box, we looked to current industry leaders – including those in health and nutrition, restaurants, farming, mixology, content and marketing – to provide their forecasts for 2020.

Erin McGregor


With over 12 years of food and nutrition under her belt, this is what Registered Dietician, Home Economist and Co-Founder of How to Eat Erin McGregor had to say on the newly revamped Canada Food Guide and its influence on 2020 resolutions.  

Gone are the traditional food groups, the prescriptive serving sizes and serving numbers. Instead, we have a visual representation of a ‘balanced plate’ and advice about not only what to eat, but how to eat. Food and drink wise, there is an emphasis on eating lots of plants and making water the ‘drink of choice.’

As far as eating behaviour goes, we’re at long last spreading the word that eating mindfully, making an effort to cook at home, and (when possible) enjoying food with others can be an equally important part of eating healthfully.

Chef Alex Chen

An Iron Chef Canada Champion and Canadian Culinary Championship Gold Medalist, here’s what Vancouver’s Chef Alex Chen of Boulevard Kitchen + Oyster Bar thinks what will be the major focus in restaurant kitchens this year.

 I believe we’ll be seeing more of a “hyper-local” focus where chefs build and maintain more relationships with the farmers around them. I can also see more restaurants having a team member dedicated to the research and dish development behind the scenes.

One technique on the rise will be juice fermentation, using fresh fruits and vegetables; we’re going to be hearing of and viewing a lot more of that.

Jeannette Andrashewski 


Trading in the pencils and chalkboards as an Early Childhood Educator of 22 years, Jeannette Andrashewski became one of Alberta’s most outspoken famers and canola advocates. With plant-based lifestyles on the rise this year, here’s how she believes it will impact her fellow farmers.

As consumers increase their plant food intake, we as farmers fully understand the need to grow quality food products. However, we’re having to grow more crops with less land and all while dealing with the effects of climate change.

Innovation and technology will be needed to produce quality crops from our farms while having respect for the environment and being able to sustain the quality that Canadians deserve.

Miranda Keyes

One of Toronto’s most prominent food stylists, and the newest host of LCBO’s 5-Stops series, here’s how Miranda Keyes recommends creating an authentic connection between people and food in styling and photography.

There has been a shift away from manipulating food using fillers, gloss and fake ingredients to showcasing the real deal.

Moving into 2020, food stylists will continue to strive to bring the best out of each ingredient, with skillful cooking, artful presentation and an eye to create real, natural and relatable images.

Erica Radey


A Marketing Manager on a mission to make chocolate more sustainable by the year 2025, here’s how Gourmet Trading Group / Cacao Barry’s Erica Radey is taking care of business, and the earth, this year, and for the years to come.

We’re always looking for bold new ways of doing business and bringing partners together to make chocolate, and the love of it, be around forever, while still making it as sustainable as possible.

Our four bold targets, which also address the biggest sustainability challenges in the chocolate supply chain, are to lift 500,000+ cocoa farmers out of poverty, eradicate child labour from the supply chain, become carbon and forest positive and have 100% sustainable ingredients in all of our products.

Ashley Riske

A major authority on brands and business, with a long-term rap sheet in media sales and marketing strategy, Kin Community Vice President, Marketing Strategy shares this advice on how brands and content creators can and will maximize their impact in 2020.

Firstly, remember that influence is an outcome, not a profession and people often need to see a message 6-9x before making a purchase. Successful partnerships will be longer term so that the creators can show how the product or service authentically adds value over a period of time.

Diversify your platforms outside surged, cluttered Instagram. 61% of people thoroughly consume video content vs. skimming and YouTube creators tend to drive more watch time and higher reports of purchase intent. Visual platform Pinterest is also under utilized but also very valuable in influencing purchase decisions.

Ryan Ginsberg


 A digital marketing and KPI specialist of over 15 years, working from Bell Media to Twitter to his current home at Hootsuite, Paid Social Global Director Ryan Ginsberg has his finger on the button of which social platforms will be making the biggest impact in 2020 and how.

I think the biggest impact we’ll see in the world of social advertising in 2020 will come from Instagram and LinkedIn.

A combination of the significant growth and effectiveness of Instagram story ads and the impact that influencers are having on brands will drive Instagram to the forefront of the social media ads landscape. Additionally, LinkedIn has been putting a strong focus on content consumption and driving users to their newsfeed, which will bode well for advertisers in 2020 as this will increase available ad inventory, drive down advertising costs and offer higher engagement and conversion rates.

Casie Stewart

An award winning digital expert, content creator and self-documentarian through her blog ‘This is My Life’ since 2005, top Toronto Influencer Casie Stewart gives her take on what’s to come in the world of influencer marketing.

One thing I’ve always said is, “I don’t want a one-night stand with a brand,” and I think we’re going to see a lot more of that in 2020. Influencers will look to participate in long-term brand partnerships and less one-offs because it provides more value to them as well as the brand. Not to mention, this will allow for transparency, which we’re already starting to see a bit with brand partnership tagging.

I think we’re also going to see an increase in niche programs where the ask is customized and tailored to the specific influencer, as opposed to a “copy and paste” approach where the same messaging gets thrown out to 50 influencers at once. Less “factory influencer programs” and more boutique-style programs.

Josh Lindley and Jessica Blaine Smith


Master Mixologist Josh Lindley, and his photographer partner Jessica Blaine Smith, have spent the last 4 years running Bartender Atlas, an online community for bartenders and cocktail enthusiasts looking to explore mixology anywhere in the world. Here’s what they believe will be coming to coasters near you this year.

Something that we have noticed recently is the raising of standards in general. You can get a Negroni literally everywhere now, and that wasn’t the case 5 years ago so seeing classics get the widespread acknowledgement they have is great.

As for what to expect in this new year and decade, a refinement and simplification of culinary techniques in cocktails. Sous-vide infusions and the introduction of “out of the box” ingredients and flavours have really become commonplace, now it’s up to the guest to engage and be adventurous when ordering.

Fotini Iconomopoulos

A 2018 recipient of a Top 40 Under 40 Award and an expert in helping businesses achieve their commercial goals as a Negotiation, Communication and Strategy Professional at Forward Focusing, Fotini Iconomopoulos had this to say on improving business-supplier communications and collaborations this year.

We’re living amongst a culture of disposability and instant gratification where many are not thinking of the long-term consequences of how they go about their business, they’re just looking at what they’re getting out of it now.

I believe that there will be more education and a bigger push for not only credibility in one’s work but also accountability.

If you are working with suppliers or influencers for your brand or business, I highly recommend dropping pleasant but proper notes in your communications regarding accountability in partnership deliveries and attendance. Also, give priority to those who do show up, and do deliver, and make it obvious in your contact that this is how partnerships will be run. No-show? No top of the list for them.