Burgers: The latest sizzling hot trends

Consumers are increasingly seeking new variations on the classic burger, demanding new flavors, different grinds and alternative proteins

Ever since the hamburger as we know it was introduced in the early 1900s, it has been a firm consumer favorite. The increase in home cooking has created even greater demand, and consumers are now seeking new variations on the humble patty. Discover the key consumer trends that are influencing the market today and how burger processors can take advantage of the opportunities they bring.


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The burger is the perfect comfort food, the magic combination of sweet, salty, crunchy, soft, hot, and cold that helps to explain why its formula has been remixed endlessly.

The Great American Burger Book


Consumers are craving new tastes

There will always be people who choose the classic burger, but according to Datassential’s Burger Keynote report, increasing numbers of consumers, particularly millennials, are looking for greater variety and seeking new options and alternatives.

And it’s not just innovative sauces, artisanal ingredients and new toppings they demand, but also variation in the patty itself. Burgers can differ greatly in bite, taste and quality due to ingredients, production processes and cooking methods, which can all make or break the final eating experience.

This creates enormous potential for burger processors. It is therefore key to have flexible processing in terms of texture and shape so that unique burgers of high quality can be produced consistently. Discover how Marel’s burger processing solutions can help.

Burger Four Types

It’s not just about beef

Consumers are increasingly choosing alternatives to the classic 100% beef patty. Instead, they seek newer, more exciting burgers made from other proteins such as turkey, salmon, lamb, bison and different types of fish. In addition, consumers are exploring different blends of seasonings and novel ingredients such as hybrid vegetable blends.

It comes as no surprise that the demand for alternative proteins is also booming. According to Datassential, around a third of consumers are interested in plant-based burgers. A strong focus on the environment and the trend for meat reduction and its perceived health benefits mean it’s not just vegetarians and vegans who are swapping out traditional protein for meat-free options.

To grab the opportunities created by the demand for more diverse options, processors must ensure they have the right burger processing equipment to handle different types of protein mass, including a variety of proteins, a range of fat-to-lean ratios and compound blends of additional ingredients.

Better proteins require different handling. It’s essential for burger processors to have the right equipment in order to optimize the texture and taste of their raw material.

Burger Video Thumpnail

Premiumization remains key

Through the years, we have seen various generations of burger types. Each one gives the consumer a specific eating experience. But the popularity of gourmet burgers continues to grow, driven primarily by consumers’ increasing focus on quality as well as the desire for new tastes and textures.

Gourmet burgers made from muscle meat, such as chuck and sirloin steak, as well as premium types of meat, including Angus and Wagyu beef, are growing in popularity. In addition, consumers are exploring different grinds that give their gourmet burger a distinctive bite.

Premiumization is where burger processors can set themselves apart in the highly competitive burger market. Better breeds and cuts require superior handling, and numerous factors must be taken into account to ensure the burger’s appearance is perfect every time. Further, the grind size of the meat and the size and orientation of the meat fibers help to determine the texture, bite and taste of a burger. Having the right burger-forming equipment to meet all the necessary criteria is crucial for optimizing texture and taste, and achieving the highest-quality results.

SensorX Magna meat inspection system detects bone and hard contaminants

Quality and safety above all

Consumer interest in the safety of their food and transparency of its journey through the supply chain is increasing. Food contamination is one of the most common food safety worries. It’s now a firm requirement that the food consumers eat will meet all safety and quality standards—with no exception.

If burger processors are to maintain customer trust, it is vital that they consistently supply quality food that meets the highest safety standards. Leading processors are increasingly automating their production to achieve this. X-ray inspection is one of the innovative ways they are ensuring their products are bone-free and have the correct lean meat to fat ratio.

Burger, Plate

Flexible burger patty production lines

Flexibility is vital for the modern-day processor. To take advantage of market opportunities created by changing consumer demand, a processor needs to be able to produce a variety of burger shapes and textures in various volumes. At the same time, the burgers must be consistent and of the highest quality.

Whether you are just starting out in burger processing, wanting to increase your current production volumes or looking to diversify and create new types of burger patties, we are your partner for burger production and have a solution to meet your every need.

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