Let's Chat Snacks

To Catch a Unicorn: Colorful Foodservice Trend Captures Millennial Market

Let's Chat Snacks Posted on Jul 10, 2018 8:00:00 AM

Leave it to the magic of social media to turn the myth of the unicorn into a dream come true for savvy food and beverage brands and foodservice operators. Unicorn food and beverages—those colorful, Instagram-worthy creations that surprise and delight a vast, visually oriented millennial market—are literally custom-made for the age of social media.

“Unicornification” (typically the act of dying food into a dazzling rainbow of pastels, often with a dash of glitter) has morphed everything from cheesecake, fudge, frappes, milkshakes, toast and cocktails into a shimmery, multicolored feast for the eyes.

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Topics: Millennials, Restaurant Operations, Snacking, Marketing

Taste Test: Small Foodservice Operations Nourish New Concepts

Let's Chat Snacks Posted on Jun 26, 2018 8:00:00 AM

Small is a big deal when it comes to foodservice operations these days. Just as consumers are gravitating toward locally grown, farm-to-table food options, many are choosing to patronize locally owned eateries that offer authentic cuisine and Instagram-worthy experiences.

As Darren Tristano, chief insights officer at the foodservice research firm Technomic explained: “This really seems to be the dawning of the era of the independent. The independents and small chains are now outperforming. The big chains are now lagging.”1

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Topics: Millennials, Restaurant Operations, Trends

Plant-Based Snack Trend Sprouts Better-for-You Business

Let's Chat Snacks Posted on Jun 12, 2018 8:00:00 AM

Rooted in the better-for-you foodservice trend, consumer appetite for plant-based products is continuing its growth spurt. Given the prevalence of a more mindful approach to food consumption, especially among wellness-oriented millennials, plants seem to have found ample fertile ground for market growth.

With 76% of U.S. adults surveyed in agreement that plant-based foods are healthy, many consumers find them an important asset that helps them maintain or improve their well-being, according to the market intelligence firm Mintel.1 Consumers surveyed find plant-based protein an advantage that helps them achieve wellness goals like weight management (31%).1

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Topics: Millennials, Restaurant Operations, Snacking, Trends

Meal Kits Offered in Stores Bite into Foodservice Market Share

Let's Chat Snacks Posted on Jun 11, 2018 8:00:00 AM

Meal kits are elbowing their way to a place at the big-box table as major food retailers strive to satisfy the consumer’s hunger for convenient meal solutions.

As reported in our last post on the subject, it wasn't that long ago that meal kit sales broke the $1 billion mark. Now a $2.2 billion business with an expected annual growth rate of 25-30% over the next half-decade,1 meal kits continue to deliver big business for subscription services like Blue Apron and Plated. And, as Albertson’s $200 million purchase of Plated shows, more traditional segments of the food and beverage industry want in.

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Topics: Millennials, Restaurant Operations, Trends, Marketing

Millennial Snack Trends Take a Bite Out Of Mealtime Business

Let's Chat Snacks Posted on Jun 5, 2018 8:00:00 AM

As the grab-and-go foodservice trend continues to take hold of busy millennials, the definition of snacking seems to shift further from between-meal treat to convenient meal replacement. Recent survey results show that 92% of millennials eat snacks as meals at least once a week, 50% four times a week and 26% a minimum of seven times a week.1

With close to 40% of millennial survey participants saying a sit-down meal is too time-consuming and 17% “can’t be bothered to cook a meal,” speed and convenience are key reasons for the snack-as-meal-substitute phenomenon.1 Snacks present a low-cost, smaller portioned food solution that fits their active lifestyles. Nearly half rank convenience as the most important factor in choosing a snack.2

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Topics: Desserts, Millennials, Restaurant Operations, Snacking

Big Data Gives Foodservice Operators Lots to Chew On

Let's Chat Snacks Posted on May 22, 2018 8:00:00 AM

In our app-happy age of head-spinning technological advancement, where more and more consumers have goods and services under their thumb—literally—thanks to their mobile devices, big data is a big deal.

According to the Pew Research Center, 77% of U.S. adults overall and 92% of young adults between the ages of 18 and 29 say they own a smartphone.1 What’s more, Pew survey data shows that upwards of half of 18- to 29-year-olds live in a household with three or more smartphones, and around half of all U.S. adults surveyed use their smartphones to make online purchases.1

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Topics: Millennials, Restaurant Operations, Snacking, Trends

Convenience Accelerated: Foodservice Technology Fast-Tracks Sales

Let's Chat Snacks Posted on May 1, 2018 8:00:00 AM

Consumer demand for convenience seems to be picking up more and more speed in the foodservice industry. According to Mintel’s Foodservice Trends 2018, a quarter of consumers surveyed are dining out because they just don’t have the time to cook at home.1 What’s more, the shift away from traditional office environments to a remote workforce could help drive demand for all-day dining and delivery, especially with nearly one in 10 survey participants dining out to work remotely.2

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Topics: Technology, Millennials, Restaurant Operations, Trends

Sales Pick Up Speed at Fast-Fine Foodservice Operations

Let's Chat Snacks Posted on Apr 17, 2018 8:00:00 AM

Fast casual has been quick to turn a buck. As a subset of the limited service category, the segment seems to be feasting on market share. At a time when consumers hunger for quick and easy meal solutions that balance taste and nutrition, can an emphasis on good food fast be anything but a boon to the bottom line?

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Topics: Millennials, Restaurant Operations, Trends

Growth Spurt: Micro Restaurant Operations Stand Tall Among Big Chains

Let's Chat Snacks Posted on Mar 20, 2018 8:00:00 AM

Good things come in small foodservice establishments, consumers seem to be saying. Despite a 4% falloff in total independent restaurant unit counts in 2017 compared to the previous year,1 it looks like consumer demand for micro restaurants is having a sizable impact. According to the global industry analysis and advisory firm NPD Group, micro-chains are breaking the lock larger chains once had on growth.

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Topics: Millennials, Restaurant Operations, Trends

The Lowdown on High Tech: How Foodservice Innovation Feeds the Bottom Line

Let's Chat Snacks Posted on Mar 6, 2018 8:00:00 AM

As competition heats up, labor costs rise and demand for quick, convenient snack and meal options grows, operators across segments are turning to technology for solutions. The faster and more efficiently they can serve customers, the more robust the bottom line is likely to be. High tech, higher check average, lower costs seems a suitable mantra for foodservice operators in the digital age.

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Topics: Technology, Restaurant Operations, Trends

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