January 11, 2011

Which Recent Food Trends Have Affected Restaurants/The Food Market?

       Recent trends or changes in the food market could include curbside pick-up, consumers choosing organic and healthier food selections in restaurants, the introduction of healthier foods in vending machines, or quick-meals bought in grocery stores. Quick-Fix meals are meals that are fully cooked or prepared (bagged salads, microwaveable meals, and other meals that can be made in under 15-20 minutes). The introduction and ongoing appeal to these meals have altered the amount of fresh produce and fresh meat once purchased by grocery stores; families with two working parents may not always have time to make dinner, so a quick-fix meal may help. Another trend in the food market that aids families with time restraints is curb-side pickup at various restaurants; curbside pickup is popular in various family restaurants, the change this trend brings is the need for more to-go boxes, plastic utensils, and napkins. Because of these extras, many restaurants may hike the price of their meals slightly, in order to compensate; in addition, with larger purchases of these required items, distributors may give restaurants a better deal when purchased in large quantities. One trend that has added more of a cost to food than most is the popularity of organic/healthy foods in restaurants, even vending machines. Since organic food costs more and there is usually less produced, establishments offering these types of food will pay more. Trends usually drive the price up on any given product, and these extra costs are passed on to consumers; trends change the volume and price in which the products involved are bought