Out of all of  the big changes in the food and drink market, the food-to-go sector appears to be growing the quickest, with brands frequently adapting to the changing trends in the market.

Starting with one of the most notably rising trends in the last few years, how much has the demand for vegetarian and vegan options affected the food-to-go market in terms of new product development?

During 2017 the health improvement trend of the general public began to take off, with 2018 adding further fuel to the craze, bringing it a new height. This trend has continued to dominate throughout the beginning of 2019. On particular facet that has gained significant traction since the summer of last year is the adoption of the vegetarian / vegan diet and lifestyle. Naturally, operators within the food-to-go market have recognised this transitional shift in vegan popularity and have invested in researching new taste experiences for this sector.

Another area that has seen development as a result of this trend is the signage on food packaging. Recently there has been an influx of self-adhesive labels that clearly outline specifics about food contents. One example is MoveMark’s dietary advice labels which are colour-coded for quick recognition.

Secondly, taking all diets into consideration, what sort of bread works best as a sandwich carrier? The best suited bread as a sandwich carrier would of course, depend on its filling. For example, fillings which would result in the bread becoming soggy, such as tomatoes or chicken tikka, are best being supported by rolls, thick cut slices or strong crust breads. These benefit the sandwiches greatly due to being able to support specific types of fillings without easily breaking apart.
On the other hand, baguettes can be just as versatile whilst not being as hefty, resulting in less mess even with large amounts of filling. Although baguettes require two hands for a consumer to eat, their limited spacing compared to a sliced breaded sandwich allows for more accurate portion control.

Besides the popularity of vegetarianism and veganism, what other notable developments have been occurring in the food-to-go industry? An interestingly impactful development in the baked food-to-go market is the way it’s become more accessible to consumers by fusions with other retailers, increasing it’s reach and ability to grow sales. Whilst consumers are fulfilling another need, such as fuelling their cars or going to a cinema, they’re met with opportunities to satisfy hunger and quench thirst through other brands that have set up shop within these other businesses. We’re now seeing Costa branches within Odeon cinemas, giving customers a premium option of having professionally made coffee and baked goods served to enjoy with their film.

Instead of off-brand to-go sandwiches in a petrol station’s own offering, you’ll find branches often infused with food-to-go brands such as Greggs or Subway, encouraging additional customer spending on meals and snacks. This fusion of retail and food-to-go is not only an increasingly popular opportunity for further revenue with a flow of potential customers guaranteed but is also safer with rent and utilities being cheaper due to being shared.

No matter the current trends in food and sector industry, Alliance is always prepared to provide you with the best catering and hospitality equipment possible to ensure you provide your customers with the perfect experience. For the latest and greatest leading food-to-go disposables, tableware and applicances, be sure to visit on online store here.