In order to succeed, caterers need to ensure they find suitable kitchen equipment suppliers capable of providing them with all the items they need. Also, it’s vital that managers understand the needs and preferences of their target audience.
Highlighting the complexities of consumer tastes, research conducted by foodservice research agency The NPD Group has revealed that people are now spending less on lunch and afternoon snacks.
The firm found that out-of-home visits for lunch and afternoon snacks have fallen by six per cent over the last two years. In contrast, breakfast and early evening meals are proving more popular, having risen by three and 12 per cent respectively.
According to the group, quick-service restaurants are benefiting from the changes in lunchtime trade.
Its director of business development Guy Fielding remarked: “As these figures show, breakfast is growing at the expense of other meal occasions – in this case lunch and afternoon snacks.”
He added: “This is particularly alarming for those channels that are heavily reliant on midday trade, but it does also signal the opportunity – and provides the motivation – for both operators and manufacturers to diversify into breakfast and evening snack occasions.”
One man who has witnessed the changing nature of consumer behaviour firsthand is Christos Karatzenis from The Real Greek, BigHospitality.co.uk reports. He pointed out that his firm has venues across London and has seen customers enjoying meals at increasingly varied times, particularly later in the afternoon.
He went on to remark: “This trend seems to be particularly apparent in our venues in shopping centres, such as Westfield Stratford and Westfield Shepherd’s Bush, which attracts both shoppers and business workers from the surrounding area.”
By monitoring consumer behaviour and adapting their products and services in response, firms stand a better chance of achieving long-term success. Meanwhile, when they are after new catering equipment, they can head online to take advantage of competitive deals.