No flash in the pan, the better-for-you movement has boiled over into the mainstream, turning up the heat on foodservice operators to blaze a clean label trail of menu innovation. But while the millennial snack market may demand more natural and nutritious options, many consumers still hanker for traditional favorites with rich and satisfying flavor profiles.
Millennial foodies are serving big changes to the foodservice industry. With 50% of U.S. millennials—one-eighth of the entire U.S. population—claiming to be foodies, foodservice entrepreneurs and restaurant operators are feeling the heat throughout the supply chain to cater to this coveted demographic, as millennial foodies drive menu innovation and transform the food economy.1
When it comes to snack sales, the Internet and consumers are starting to click. According to NPD Group, a leading market research firm, snack manufacturers are biting off bigger chunks of market share by tapping the consumer’s appetite for online shopping.
2016 was a whirlwind of on-the-go snacking, clean label watching, better-for-you branding and millennial menu-innovation mania. No surprise, then, that those in the know forecast flux for the new year.
The millennial mania for better-for-you and clean label foodservice trends has spilled over into the beverage market in a big way. As millennials look to foods and drinks with high nutritional value to help fuel their busy lifestyles and foster their overall sense of health and well-being, they have become the consumer group with the highest consumption of functional beverages.1
When it comes to snack trends that stick around, chewy candy is high on the list. Chewy candy not only satisfies the American consumer’s sweet tooth; it also helps satisfy foodservice operators’ appetite for sales. Though chocolate maintains the lead as a sales generator, chewy candy ate up nearly $3.3 billion in sales in the 52 weeks ending March 20, 2016, and saw a 6.5% increase in dollar sales from 2015.1
As the grab-and-go phenomenon and self-service micro markets continue to accelerate, it’s hard not to wonder where they're leading us. Enter Amazon Go, the world’s first checkout-free grocery store. Due to open its doors in early 2017 in Amazon’s home base of Seattle, it shifts the foodservice trend of speed and convenience into warp drive.
Consumers are cocoa loco, especially at this time of year. There’s nothing like hot cocoa to give you a warm and fuzzy feeling on cold winter days, when foodservice operators cozy up to it as a reliable seller. It’s the quintessential winter beverage, a popular seasonal staple for consumers of all ages. But while hot cocoa and hot chocolate are often considered one and the same, their flavor profiles can vary.
Nothing seems to perk up profits and spread good cheer among foodservice operators like holiday coffee sales. Last year, one of the jolly juggernauts in the coffee category saw sales spike 12% during the holiday season to $5.47 billion.1