ROCKVILLE, Md., Nov. 3, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- America's health issues have been well publicized, and consumer awareness of issues such as obesity and diabetes has increased considerably in recent years. For the restaurant industry, the cycles of first drawing attention to the issue, and then becoming aware of the issue, are now past. Change in the form of menu innovation and marketing items is now upon the industry, according to market research publisher Packaged Facts in the report, Sandwiches: Market Trends and Opportunities.
It's important for food service operators to take a stance when it comes to health on the menu, but the subjectivity of health creates a dilemma for restaurant menu developers. Two approaches to integrating health on the menu are common—inherent health and diet health food offerings. Particularly trendy are inherent health trends emphasizing foods and ingredients that are fresh, naturally produced, and locally sourced.
"The bottom line is that health trends are moving away from being diet-focused in and toward adopting healthier lifestyles. This means that the associating healthy with low calorie, low fat, and/or low carb foods is no longer the ideal. With increased knowledge of food sourcing and manufacturing practices, food marketers have increasingly focused on foods that are inherently healthy," says David Sprinkle, research director, Packaged Facts.
The shift towards inherently healthy menu terms is evident. Organic, grass fed, hormone free, sustainable, cage free, and gluten-free are all among the fast growing menu item terms from 2010-14. These terms serve as a cue for consumers that the menu item has a health advantage but also tie quality and taste. Additionally, inherently healthy menu terms communicate a higher degree of transparency and can enhance the integrity of the restaurant concept—linking to food safety. Developing menu items and restaurant concepts that embrace inherently healthy ingredients is of critical importance in remaining relevant to today's restaurant-goers.
Gluten free has seen the most growth from 2010-14, up 612% with an increase of more than 61% in during 2013-2014. Gluten free menu items are clearly a hot trend and still somewhat of a newcomer in the healthy food realm. Despite growth in gluten free menu items, cross-contamination remains a realistic threat to consumers when dining at foodservice locations. Typically, operators cannot guarantee their food will not come into contact with gluten-containing foods, even if they are prepared on separate sanitized equipment.
By capitalizing on inherent health trends, sandwiches are strengthening their reputation for typically carrying a healthier halo than other menu items, such as their burger cousins. Many of the top terms on the menus of restaurants that serve sandwiches are inherently healthy: multi grain, all natural, organic, and whole grain. Furthermore, several of these inherently healthy menu terms posted the greatest growth in the last year—hormone free (up 200%), all natural (154.5%), and organic (60%).
Sandwiches: Market Trends and Opportunities assesses how food and foodservice industry participants are adding—and can add—value to their sandwich strategies, as they relate to three overriding themes: healthfulness, culinary innovation, and customization and consumer choice. With respect to each of these themes, this report trends related consumer preferences and attitudes over time; ties each theme to pertinent foodservice (restaurant and prepared foods) menu trends supported by a wealth of examples; assesses related foodservice marketing strategies; and identities implications and applications for the packaged groceries segment of the market. For more information on Sandwiches: Market Trends and Opportunities or to purchase the report visit: http://www.packagedfacts.com/redirect.asp?progid=87997&productid=9072630.
About Packaged Facts – Packaged Facts, a division of MarketResearch.com, publishes market intelligence on a wide range of consumer market topics, including consumer demographics and shopper insights, consumer financial products and services, consumer goods and retailing, consumer packaged goods, and pet products and services. Packaged Facts also offers a full range of custom research services. Reports can be purchased at www.PackagedFacts.com and are also available on www.marketresearch.com and www.profound.com.
To view the original version on PR Newswire, visit:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/packaged-facts-inherently-healthy-sandwiches-the-best-thing-sincewell-you-know-300171747.html
SOURCE Packaged Facts