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Consumer Trends

Consumer trends, insights and preferences

Consumer Trends

An Inside Look at Sides

Side dishes are turning into a main focus for many operators. “They used to be one of those things you could ignore," said Kay Logsdon, editor-in-chief of The Food Channel. "They were just 'there.' But lately we've noticed that side dishes are a prominent part of the meal—to the point of overtaking the center-of-the-plate."

Consumer Trends

Salt peppers more menu descriptions

Despite the efforts of health authorities to moderate salt intake, the mention of salt on restaurant menus has increased 144 percent in the last five years, according to new research from Technomic.

With Super Bowl Sunday a few days away, there’s only one thing that can be predicted with confidence: Americans are going to eat a ton of chicken wings.

The gluten-free trend doesn’t have long legs, reported Dr. Elizabeth Sloan, president of Sloan Trends, in a presentation at the recent Research Chefs Association conference in Texas. Among her findings, a few standout themes emerged.

While street food hasn’t always been beloved by consumers, that attitude is clearly changing. Enticed by the convenience and affordability of street food, along with its often gourmet flavors and forms, consumers are flocking to their local lunch stands for fast but satisfying meals, as well as enjoying new low-cost global street food-inspired restaurants.

Fresh, healthy items are a big draw for fast-casuals and QSRs, say reports from a variety of industry groups, and nothing speaks fresh and healthier better than salad, especially if it’s topped with seasonal vegetables. In fact, according to Technomic's Left Side of the Menu: Soup & Salad Consumer Trend Report, restaurant customers are ordering more salad: Over the course of two years, diners are ordering salad—at least occasionally—76% of the time, up from 66% of those surveyed in the 2009 study.

"Innovative" and "amazing" describe Zagat’s top-rated spots in 20 cities.

Technomic’s detailed look at customers brought some unexpected revelations about the restaurant business.

Technomic has announced the winners of its 2016 Chain Restaurant Consumers’ Choice Awards in four categories, based on consumer assessments of attributes.

Consumers are split on eliminating tipping, New Yorkers don't like mobile payment apps, mashups and communal tables are out and avocado toast is still trending. Here's a look at more findings from Zagat's National Dining Trends Survey.

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