Broccoli coffee: the latest hipster food fad?
It seems like every other week there is a new hipster food trend that sweeps across Instagram. From charcoal burger buns to unicorn anything, smoothie bowls to sushi burritos, and pizzas’ covered in glitter – the world has been exposed to some pretty weird stuff, and it seems like things are set to get even weirder as Australia’s federal government agency for scientific research has entered the arena.
The latest foodie fad has been concocted in Australia by the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (Csiro) along with Hort Innovation, a non-profit horticultural Research and Development Corporation (RDC). The two organisations have come together to try and tackle two key global issues – food waste and health, and the result? Enter the ‘broccolatte’.
Exactly what it sounds like, the ‘broccolatte’ is broccoli coffee, made with a specially engineered broccoli powder. The “100 per cent broccoli powder” is made from whole broccoli and produced using a “combination of selected pre-treatment and drying processes to retain the natural colour, flavour and nutrient composition of fresh broccoli”. Two tablespoons of the food substitute would count for one of your five a day.
Hort Innovation chief executive John Lloyd commented: “Research is showing the average Australian is still not eating the recommended daily intake of vegetables a day and options such as broccoli powder will help address this.”
In a blog about the new product, Csiro noted that almost two out of three Australian adults are overweight or obese, just going to show the need for healthy food supplements. The two companies hope that the powder will provide a fast and easy way to get nutrients into our body.
As well as providing an answer to mounting health issues the powder is made from produce that would otherwise be binned, working toward reducing global food waste. In 2015 the UK threw away 7.3 million tonnes of waste, worth a staggering £13bn. By using ‘ugly’ broccoli from farms which wouldn’t be put on the shelves, the broccoli powder is a creative way to make the most of natural produce.
Lead researcher for the powder, Dr Mary Ann Augustin, said: “The powders are an option for farmers who wish to produce value-added vegetable ingredients for the lucrative functional food markets.”
So it seems like unlike most other food fads, the newly manufactured broccoli powder does have its uses. We’re not sure that broccolattes or broccoccinos will catch on anytime soon, but Csiro have said that the powder is part of a larger research project and it could also be used to supplement smoothies, dips, soups and baked goods.
As hipster food trends go, this could be one that is here to stay!