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Appeal to health-conscious diners, save on labor with dispensed functional beverages

Photograph: Nestle Professional

Today’s consumers are looking for more—wider variety, better flavor, healthier options and faster service. Meanwhile, operators in all segments are working hard to meet these demands amid challenges including supply chain issues and labor shortages. As consumers continue to prioritize better quality foods and beverages, operators can boost the appeal of their beverage options by highlighting functional drinks that taste great. What’s more, fresh, flavorful beverages that are dispensed versus needing to be stored and prepared individually on demand reduce labor—perfect for operations working with skeleton crews.

Unique options suited to modern demands and challenges

According to Technomic’s 2022 Beverage Consumer Trend Report, specialty beverage concepts saw a 37% growth in sales even amid the pandemic. Consumers are interested in finding and trying unique, tasty beverages either to go along with a meal or even on their own as a snack or treat. Among the top beverages consumers say they are purchasing more often now than they did two years ago are aguas frescas (31% of consumers are purchasing more) and fusion/new age drinks (30%). For operators wanting to expand their offerings without maxing out labor, machine-dispensed drinks that offer unique flavors and functional benefits without the need for blending, mixing or the hassles of individual bottles or cans are an ideal solution.

Great taste, with benefits

Technomic’s Beverage report found that 30% of consumers overall say they like to try new and unique beverages offered at foodservice locations—and that number’s even higher among younger consumers (42%). Additionally, 27% of consumers overall say they would be likely to order beverages that offer functional benefits, with younger consumers again indexing higher at 37%. These statistics underscore the growing trend away from carbonated soft drinks toward flavorful new beverages with a healthier halo. To appeal to these new tastes and preferences, beverages such as Nestlé Vitality®’s line of sugar-free, zero-calorie Vitamin Enhanced Waters are a great option. Available in many tempting flavors (Pineapple Coconut; Black Cherry Lime; Strawberry Kiwi; Watermelon; Tropical Mango; Grape Raspberry and Blueberry Pomegranate Acai), these refreshing waters provide an excellent source of vitamins, B3 (niacin), B5 (panthothenic acid), B6 and B12, zinc and magnesium, making them a perfect menu offering for any time of day.

Meeting operational needs

On the labor side, the Vitality® Express® solution is designed to make serving functional beverages simple. With a reliable, safe and sanitary closed system that can serve up to eight cold beverages with a flip of a switch, operators can offer popular juices in the morning and teas, lemonades and Vitamin Enhanced Waters throughout the rest of the day. Since the beverages are sold in concentrated form, workers need only to fit the zero-waste ExpressPak® into the beverage dispenser and press a button—no stirring, blending or mixing required!

As consumers continue to prioritize health, operators can encourage beverage purchases by offering the functional beverages that diners are looking for—all without maxing out labor. To learn more about Nestlé Vitality® Vitamin Enhanced Waters, click here.

This post is sponsored by Nestlé Professional


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