"Ovention is a Winner"—
Eating out provides a nice break from cooking, but convenience isn’t the only thing drawing crowds away from their kitchens. Data shows that surveyed adults crave new and adventurous culinary experiences as much as they want familiar comfort food.
Healthcare foodservice directors can capitalize on this trend by integrating a mix of comfort and adventurous cuisine into their menus and also in their marketing.
Millennials drive the adventurous eating trend, with some eating out up to 28 times per month — three times as often as their Gen X counterpart. While the pandemic pushed many people to order takeout, a majority of surveyed Gen Z and millennials said they would return to eating at restaurants as soon as shelter-in-place isolation ends.
One reason for people’s willingness to explore new venues and cuisine is the connection between food and self expression. More than ever, dietary preferences align with one’s “declaration of identity” or political ideology, according to a Nation’s Restaurant News article.
Foodservice directors can use this insight to appeal to their patients and retail customers. Here are five ways to incorporate comfort and adventurous food in your cafés, grab ‘n go offerings, patient meals and more.
Improving your food is just one part of redefining the healthcare eating experience. You also need to change the way your operation talks about how food is sourced, prepared and served in your marketing and advertising. This information is just as important to your diners as the meals being served!
Social responsibility is an important part of the conversations we have about food. When you advertise your meals, be sure to highlight if something is locally sourced, minimally processed, organic, free of antibiotics or hormones, or made with an alternative protein.
Advertising a new, adventurous meal may even generate “buzz” from patients and staff — like selling an amazing “baconless” BLT or cauliflower crust pizza.
By integrating these adventurous and comfort food trends, you will redefine the healthcare eating experience and keep your patients and staff excited for more.
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