The top food trends to watch for in the coming year include a relatively exotic choice of meat for American palates: goat; as well as efficient, nutrient-packed vegetables: greens.

Lane PR’s US Food and Beverage Trends Report, which elicited responses from nearly 70 influential journalists, restaurateurs and epicureans this summer, consisted of 10 open-ended questions developed to get a sense of changes afoot in America's food landscape. In addition to finding out the latest trends in proteins and vegetables, the survey also asked for insights on the next big trend in spices, artisanal ingredients, wine, beer, cocktails and buzzwords.

"We found that survey participants highlighted foods that are popular in most other parts of the world for their efficient production and delivery of nutrition, such as goat, legumes and greens, all of which lend themselves to healthier diets and lifestyles," said Kristen Siefkin, head of the food and beverage group at Lane PR. "However, we want to assure the public that pork has not lost favor; it was the second most popular protein mentioned, and we anticipate it will continue to be featured at mealtimes, at home and in restaurants across the country."

Highlights of the Survey A number of other trends appear to be underway in the nation's food and beverage arena, including:
• A variety of peppers as a way to spice up dishes, from an old standby like black pepper to more complex smoked paprika or Spanish pimento;
• Simple meals can be made special with the addition of an artisanal product, with unique cheeses, honey and vinegars among the products to watch for;
• A revival among Bordeaux varietals, including Carmenere, Merlot and Sauvignon blanc;
• Experimenting in brewing will continue, particularly in creating flavored beers;
• Fresh herbs and vegetables will be found behind the bar as ingredients for cocktails;
• Buzzwords like foodie, locavore and molecular gastronomy are on their way out;
• Buzzwords like homegrown, homemade and local are on their way in.