"Today's consumers are willing to experiment with new dessert flavors and ingredients, but foodservice operators should optimize their assortments with trusted brand names and familiar products."
Let’s face it: Snack trends may come and go, but there’s one constant foodservice operators can rely on, and that’s the pivotal importance of taste and flavor in driving the consumer’s snack choices.
“When it comes to product innovation in the ever-changing dessert market, good is never good enough.”
A perennial favorite, ice cream has a long history as the cold snack that consumers stay hot for. It's no wonder that when New York’s Museum of Ice Cream debuted last year, fans of the creamy favorite scooped up all 30,000 tickets in five days.1 The joy of ice cream continues to captivate imaginations and tantalize taste buds.
As busy, health-conscious consumers continue to embrace better-for-you snacking as a source of smaller, quicker meals, the popularity and diversity of staples like yogurt grows. Roughly one quarter of consumers tend to snack in the morning instead of having a full meal,1 and yogurt’s portability (especially in single-serve packs) and versatility (it’s often combined with fruits and other toppings) make it an especially appealing breakfast option. No wonder 39% of adults nosh on yogurt as a snack, and 44% eat it for breakfast.1
Healthy snacks are definitely in, but that doesn’t mean that a large batch of consumers don’t favor snacks that fit a sugary flavor profile. According to last year’s Packaged Facts report, “Sweet Baked Goods: U.S. Market Trends,” while 30% of Americans claimed to limit snacks to healthy options and 45% cited nutritional value as the key factor in their food choices, consumers still like to indulge in their favorite sweet treats, provided they can find more wholesome versions of them.1
As summer heats up across the country, it’s no surprise that consumers often choose to cool off with frosty and frothy blended beverages. Making it the perfect time to promote milkshakes in your operation.
Coffee’s popularity just keeps perking up, thanks to its distinctive flavor. Of course, the love affair between coffee and dessert is legendary—and coffee and ice cream have always been sweet on each other. But now coffee flavor is enjoying a new moment as it gets cozy with both sweet and savory menu concepts.
Some say bigger is better. We say mini is most definitely a big deal—especially when it comes to tasty treats. While brownies, apple pie and chocolate cake still fare well with sweet seekers, 34% of consumers say they’re more likely to order dessert if the portions weren’t so … sizable.1
When you need answers, you gotta go right to the source. In the culinary world that means the innovators, the educators, the trend drivers … oh wait, that’s often the same person: the chef.