Foodservice Everywhere

This is the tantalizing phrase that Jackie Rodriguez, senior manager with Technomic, uses to describe the growing trend towards taking foodservice to on-the-move consumers via smaller, highly focused outlets. This emerging category includes a variety of outlets such as food trucks, kiosks, micro-marts, and even high-tech vending machines. The aim is a marriage between creative high-quality food offerings and convenience, and the early adopters tend to be younger consumers who are more accustomed to eating on the run.

If you missed FE&S’ webcast on January 27, you might want to circle back and listen to this engaging conversation between Joe Carbonara and three stellar panelists – Jackie Rodriguez, Storm Hodge, assistant director, housing and food services, University of Washington and AJ Barker, chef consultant with Think Tank Hospitality Group – discussing the implications and the real life challenges of executing against this strategy from the operator’s perspective. The webcast, Food-on-the-Move, along with all our past webcasts, can be found online at fesmag.com.

In this issue of FE&S, writer Tom O’Brien will expand upon this theme with his piece beginning on page 24. This trend exists on the opposite end of the spectrum from the slow food movement from a few years ago, but it shares a commitment to fresh high-quality offerings. I think you’ll enjoy reading about its evolution and contemplating what it might mean for foodservice in the near future.

Now is the time to plan your visit to Chicago for the 2015 National Restaurant Association Show, May 16-19, if you haven’t done so already. We are beyond excited about hosting FE&S’ 2015 Dealer of the Year and All-Industry Awards Gala, which takes place on May 16, once again at the incomparable Four Seasons Hotel-Chicago. We have an exciting group of winners this year and it’s shaping up to be a memorable evening. Please see a list of our winners to date on page 52.