Craftsmanship

Consumers are moving from being interested in the artisans behind their products, to desiring active engagement with them. Brands are expected to be the facilitators of these deeper producer-consumer relationships

How is this sub-trend evolving?

How it was

Bringing the craftsman and their skill to life – for the consumer

New Zealand’s artisan honey company ‘J Friend & Co’ shares stories of its various beekeepers on the labels of its products and website.

How it was

Enabling consumers to actively engage with artisan producers

Michigan Cheese Makers run ‘meet the makers’ open days at their farm, when consumers can engage with the people and processes behind their favourite cheeses.

How it will be

Bringing the craftsman and their skill to life – for the consumer

New Zealand’s artisan honey company ‘J Friend & Co’ shares stories of its various beekeepers on the labels of its products and website.

In-market examples from around the world

What: Mengokoro Kunimoto in Japan sees the owner working 14 hour days to perfect his ramen. His commitment draws huge numbers of people to experience his craft.
Why: People are excited to see someone so dedicated to their craft. Mr Kunimoto has earned the admiration and loyalty of his growing customer base through hard work and dedication – as well as the fact that he handmakes the ramen almost entirely by himself. A true celebration of craftsmanship and a totally real experience.
What: A small rent-a-kitchen company crafting bespoke, participatory cooking experiences for private events
Why: With the growing consumer desire to become food connoisseurs and craftsmen, Culinary Underground has become so popular. Each bespoke menu is crafted based on a consultation with the host, and the outcome (co-created by all the guests in the pop-up kitchen) is a work of art. The highlight of the party is getting to snap, share and then consume the dish you’ve crafted.
What: London-based streetwear brand passionate about origins of production and celebrating quality and craft over quantity. Each garment will be individually numbered and released in small runs, with no repeat production.
Why: In a time with rapid churn-out of products this new brand wants to create quality garments using 100 British manufacturing – from fabrics and trims, to details such as letterpressed tags.
What: Fortaleza traditional Mexican tequila has built such a following amongst Millennials in central America that luxury beverage company IndieBrands is bringing it to Europe.
Why: The Mexican Fortaleza founders have spent nearly a decade recovering and perfecting an agave distilling process that is over 130 years old. Each product in their simple portfolio of three has a highly particular and technical process behind it, for example, the airtight, stainless steel distilling of the ‘crystal clear’ tequila. Younger consumers latch onto Fortaleza’s ‘remixed heritage ‘.
What: Planete Chocolat in Belgium runs ‘make your own chocolate’ courses throughout the year.
Why: Capitalising on the fame and prestige of the belgian chocolate market, Planete Chocolat’s courses draw interest from consumers who are increasingly curious about intricate cooking processes, and ambitious in what they are willing to try for themselves.
What: Iluliaq is a premium still water  that comes from the Sermeq Kujalleg glacier on the west coast of  Greenland.
Why: To say this is one of the rarest and purest waters on the planet is no exaggeration as it is extracted from a glacier that is 50,000 years old. Ice collection is dependent upon weather, making production very limited. Indeed bottles are only ordered on receipt of payment and shipped by air direct from the supplier.
What: Two Ontario foodies initially made their vinegar as a hobby and it has now become an ingredient coveted by some of Canada’s premier chefs.
Why: The producers pick and press grapes for their ice wine vinegar at minus 8 degrees, before ageing and blending different pressed juices to craft the finest flavours. New innovations like this vinegar that blends hops with ice wine keep pushing the craft to the next level.
What: American-founded Edge Brewing Co is successfully bringing the craft beer revolution to Barcelona.
Why: Spanish consumers want more than factory-produced commercial cerveza, and Barcelona is just discovering alternatives to it. Edge beer is made using American equipment and know-how, but branded with iconic Spanish architecture and design.