How Instagram has changed the food industry

Instagram has helped create cults out of baked goods


(CNN) – Some users may be most excited about the iPhone 7’s upgraded camera. For Instagram stars getting that perfect shot of their food is the key to their success. Believe it or not instagramming food is actually a serious business.

Ok, so Alexa we’ve got our lunch, but we can’t eat it yet right?

Alexa Mehraban, Food Instagrammer said, “We can’t eat it yet, we have to style the table.”

If you want to practice self-control just have lunch with one of New York’s top Instagram foodies.

Alexa Mehraban, “If the place is right I’ll stand on the chair.”

At 24, Alexa Mehraban is what’s known as an Instagram “influencer”. Her account “eatingnyc” has more than 200,000 followers, clamoring for her latest. Hashtag-foodporn. So much so that restaurants are now clamoring for her attention.

Alexa Mehraban, “So a bunch of restaurants invite me and say we have a new menu and we’d like to have you come in because you haven’t been here yet, they really want me to come in, try the food and share the photo with my followers, because the exposure is for them is really great.”

While her day job is now running PR for this restaurant chain. She’s also made close to 50 thousand dollars through Instagram. Creating sponsored content for brands including Oreos and Kellogg’s.

At our next stop, for ice-cream, naturally Instagram is about more than just exposure.

Nick Morgenstern, Founder, Morgenstern’s Finest Ice Cream said, “It’s a great way to track how our customers are interacting with what we do, how they respond to the flavors that we put on the menu – we adjust the menu based on things that people like more or less.”

Alexa Mehraban, “Is the pistachio pesto pink?  Yes.  Ok so I’ll try the pistachio pesto.”

This is the trickiest of all I think because its dripping down my hand.

Alexa Mehraban, “This is like a shower.”

The end result in Alexa’s case at least. Perfect. Instagram has helped create cults out of baked goods.

Alexa Mehraban, “I feel like I wanna put this closer to the light, so you can see the colors. It’s like a croissant but its kind of taken to a new level and its super trendy.”

New York’s Instagram influencers are a close-knit community and eating dinner with them, well its nothing short of extraordinary.

Daryl Zweben, Food instagrammer said, “I think that restaurants are definitely more aware of having photogenic dishes.”

Jeremy Jacobowitz, Food Instagrammer said, “People care about food more than they ever have.”

Alexa Mehraban, “Instagram is just an outlet that’s let that passion for food to explode.”

After the day we’ve had, that’s not the only thing about to explode.

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