Next to my desk sits an inconspicuous white cabinet. It stands about 5 feet tall, and to the uninitiated, the cabinet looks unassuming—likely containing binders of contracts or expense report receipts or some other unexciting business necessities.
Peek inside, however, and you’ll find five glorious shelves of natural food and beverage samples, all of which display innovation, sustainability, taste, ingredient integrity and inspiration for the articles I publish on newhope.com and in Delicious Living and Natural Foods Merchandiser. Some products I request; others are sent to me by forward-thinking brands. But all of these samples help me take the pulse of natural food and beverage trends across the industry. (My cabinet of wonder is also a boon to my colleagues, who are never far from a sweet or salty snack.)
In addition to the gallery series Unboxed, where I review natural food and beverages on a weekly basis, did you know that I also Instagram (@newhopenetwork) every single product that crosses my desk? In the following slideshow, find a selection of my favorite products I tasted this year.