Trends

Keeping the foodservice equipment marketplace up to date with the latest menu and concept trends.

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With corporate feeding needs evolving in the face of COVID-19, operators react accordingly.

Safety, convenience and reduced financial risk make small foodservice operations appealing today.

As 2020 progresses, restaurants and noncommercial foodservice operators increasingly place on their proverbial front burners those initiatives that have proven successful in maintaining revenue.

Prepared food has long been a part of supermarkets’ repertoire, but some retailers have taken in-store dining a step further: becoming a grocerant.

Recognition as an FE&S DSR of the Month is an earned achievement. This group represents individuals at the top of their game in terms of bringing in sales, expanding existing account business, managing clients and working well with supply chain partners.

“Despite all the chaos, hospital patients with or without COVID-19 must receive food at least three times a day,” says Martha Rardin, MS, RD, CD, FAND, director of Nutrition and Dietetics and the diabetes coordinator, at Hendricks Regional Health in Danville, Ind.

Traditional operators have had to become creative to try to stay afloat.

Cafeteria and retail sales fell dramatically at most hospitals starting in mid-March. In mid-June when some hospitals resumed elective surgeries and more medical and administrative staff returned to working on-site, various facilities started to report an uptick in sales.

Sanitation and cleanliness efforts skyrocketed with the pandemic. While continuing with various phases of reopening, it is imperative for operators to continue to enforce safe food-handling protocols, says Larry Lynch, the National Restaurant Association’s senior vice president of Certification & Operations.

Tweaks to seating and serving come into play at coffee shops.

The sandwich segment was well positioned to withstand the challenges and limitations of the pandemic. The majority of these operations are limited service, providing easy conversion to off-premises services.

Premade and prepackaged grab-and-go foods and snacks offer an alternative, portable dining option.

Operators must remain ready to respond if they receive an influx of COVID-19-infected patients in the future.

The snack segment takes many forms in foodservice. For some restaurants, it encompasses a section of the menu apart from more significant appetizers and small plates. Operations like sports and cocktail bars may offer complimentary snacks on the bar, like nuts and olives.

Size, location, application and equipment are key factors for an effective dry storage area design.

As takeout options continue to increase, eco-friendly packaging options come into question in terms of balancing sustainability goals with costs, availability and new normal realities.