The foodservice industry has become a highly competitive market – triggered by a more sophisticated, more demanding customer base who’s no longer willing to settle for traditional menu offerings.
In 2012, foodservice sales totaled a whopping $517.3 billion in the United States and Canada. And that number is projected to reach $577.1 billion in 2017 – an 11.6% increase.* These totals speak volumes – supporting that foodservice chains are providing consumers what they crave most: nutritious variety at a reasonable price.
While the Top Ten foodservice chains (Subway, McDonald’s, Starbucks, Pizza Hut, Dunkin’ Donuts, Burger King, 7-Eleven, Wendy’s, Taco Bell, Domino’s Pizza**) continue to maintain their dominance, they still keep a watchful eye on potential trends for the upcoming year. Oftentimes being the first to offer what’s “hot” in the market is what helps you stand out in a competitive landscape.
Consultant Andrew Freeman, chief executive of San Francisco-based Andrew Freeman & Co., has gathered together his predictions on what’s ahead in the industry with regard to food. Some of the highlights are below:
Today’s demanding consumer wants more than the same old “hamburger and fries” of yesterday. They want the convenience of “fast food” coupled with an infusion of flavors and a variety of menu options. And while goat might seem somewhat adventurous for restaurant goers, if there’s enough demand you might just see it alongside your traditional favorites on menu boards.
*Nation’s Restaurant News, November 18, 2013, “International Top 25” - Page 28
**NRN''s 2013 Top 200 Foodservice Chains
***Nation’s Restaurant News, December 2, 2013, “On the menu in 2014” - Page 26. Webinar entitled “Blurred Lines”