What’s the latest dish?
Locally grown and seasonality are still in the spotlight
- The movement toward using local ingredients remains prominent as restaurants incorporate more traditional, authentic and globally inspired dishes.
- "Local" as an ingredient marketing claim has grown and is expected to increase.
- Seasonal ingredients and menu items communicate freshness, local interest and celebrate the growing harvest season.
Breakfast continues to shine, all the time
- Many restaurant chains are expanding into the a.m. daypart or revamping their morning menus.
- Fresh fruit is becoming a more popular breakfast item, falling more in line with the focus on health.
- Some operators are beginning to serve breakfast all day as the popularity for this morning meal continues.
Health and Nutrition are here to stay
- Consumers are still planning to eat more healthfully in the upcoming year, although reductions in added sugar, sodium, and fat in foods may impact taste perceptions.
- Restaurants have continued to increase healthy item claims and many are taking steps towards “better for you” (BFY) menu items.
- Specialized menus, sections or icons on Gluten Free, Lower Sodium and Diabetic-friendly dishes continue to pop up, while “right-size” portion positioning is evident on menus.
Government and Economy - continuous progress
- Transparency still taking shape.
- Product sourcing, ingredients and nutrition information is being shared with consumers up front rather than in response to demand.
- Sustainability remains important for all aspects of the industry.
Media & Mobile abuzz
- Social media will be key to reaching health professionals and key food and beverage influencers.
- Mobile applications, such as iPad menus, will allow restaurants to reach a younger, on-the-go consumer.
- Restaurants will continue providing discounts via couponing and social media sites.