10 December

2011 promises to ring in nutritious changes at restaurants

Synergy Restaurant Consultants | Blog, Restaurant News
Synergy Restaurant Consultants

As 2011 soon approaches, so too will food-labeling requirements for many restaurants, particularly chains with 20 or more locations. Check out the following foodservice trends as the top 5 that will result from the federal menu labeling mandates.

1. Healthy by association

Although diners surveyed state they want to eat healthier, they also often complain that healthy food doesn’t taste as good. But, Mintel showcases Taco Bell as a great example of lowering sodium (at various test locations) without compromising taste. Even Jason’s Deli is promoting their free of high-fructose corn syrup, trans fats and pesticides.

The key point to remember here is that people feel good about eating at restaurants perceived as healthy.

2. Automated menus

Next year, we believe there will be more restaurants using electronic order takers that will allow customers to customize their order. This move will certainly increase the speed of order fulfillment and reduce dependency on front-of-house staff.

3. Locally grown

According to a recent study in restaurant trends, there was 15% increase in the second quarter of 2009 of the use of locally grown ingredients in restaurant dishes and expects the trend to continue in 2011.

4. Transparency

More cities will require restaurants to post letter grades based on health inspection scores in addition to posting calorie counts of menu items.

5. Exceptions to the rule

While there will be a mandate for posting calories, this is not included for foods that are offered on a limited time basis. The result of this may have restaurants offering seasonally indulgent menu items that will allow customers to indulge without knowing the nutritional value.

How will you market “healthy” at your restaurant in 2011?

Blog, Restaurant News