The tables have turned, and now kids may be more interested in fruits and vegetables than their parents. At least, that’s what we’ve gathered from NPD’s “The Future of Eating: Who’s Eating What in 2018.” According to the report, the consumption of fresh foods grew by 20 percent to more than 100 billion eatings from 2003-2013, and the trend is predicted to continue. Millennials and Generation Z are primarily responsible.
Why, you ask? Research shows that young adults place higher value on freshness and nutrition than other generations. Fruits in particular will be a key factor in the growth of better-for-you eating. With the average American adult buying a meal or snack from a restaurant 5.8 times a week, restaurant and foodservice operators are taking notice.
“Foods on the store’s perimeter will benefit from this increasing interest in fresh,” said Darren Seifer, NPD food and beverage industry analyst. He added that operators can take advantage of this trend by linking their products to fresh foods in innovative ways.
Fat-free, dairy-free, and low-calorie, the real fruit flavors of DOLE®Soft Serve are a great way to keep health-conscious customers happy. Plus, offering fresh fruit as a topping can further boost your popularity with Millennials and Generation Z. And when you’re popular, everybody wins.
Millennials were born into a world of infinite choice and have come to expect the unexpected in foods and beverages, including desserts. What attracts them to go out for dessert, rather than eating it at home, is simple—indulgences that are unique, customizable, or difficult for them to prepare.
One dessert category with steadily expanding sales is soft serve. According to Datassential, a market research firm for the foodservice industry, soft serve has grown 18 percent over the last 4 years and 11 percent between 2013 and 2014 alone. Why the resurgence? Millennials have great memories of eating soft serve growing up, so it’s a familiar favorite. But it’s also easy to customize with emerging flavors and and infinite number of toppings.
If you’re looking for a soft serve created to be unique, you might consider DOLE Soft Serve. Not only does it come in 6 delicious fruit flavors, it’s easy to customize to create LTO and seasonal offerings. Top it with fruit, chocolate chips, candy or nuts, shake on vanilla sprinkles, serve it float-style by pouring fruit juice or lemon lime soda, or combine flavors to create new taste sensations. And remember, getting customers to try new things and provide feedback is a great way to earn loyalty and know exactly what flavors they like. Enjoy!