Session FIlm: Disruptors Transforming the Industry is the latest foodservice event made by industry leaders for industry leaders. Executives, master chefs, restaurateurs, mixologists, and filmmakers gather for a day of Food Theory: collaboration, education, and entertainment. Attendees participated in interactive panel sessions, where custom films preceded an expert-panel Q&A. Missed out? Never fear! Enjoy this featured panel film below and get ready for 2017.

New challengers are taking a bite out of the competition in the restaurant and hospitality space. With the restaurant industry approaching $1 trillion in sales, the business is ripe for transformation. From on-demand delivery and developing technologies, to employee management and other operational strategies, what innovations are visionaries exploring and what changes will unlock the next level of service? The sector has seen rapid change in three particular areas: technology, healthy food, and design.


Technology ramped up in the past three years to incorporate tablet-based POS systems that redefine how operators and consumers interact. These systems, with their streamlined integration and relatively intuitive training, have made for more efficient speeds of service and have allowed brands to drive up their sales. Along with updates in POS, online reservation platforms and online-dining concierge apps , such as Resy and I Know The Chef, have made dining out more convenient, encouraging more consumers to do so on a regular basis.

Healthy Food

According to Foodable Labs, the consumer sentiment on healthy food is up 29.8 points since 2012. And with the number of social mentions of the top 50 healthy concepts has gone up over 480 percent in the last two years, healthy eating is not only a disruption, but an evolution in consumer behavior.

At Green Bar & Kitchen, a plant-based restaurant in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., they are reeling in customers by making healthy food more familiar and approachable. While their menu items are still plant-based, they feature tacos, burgers, and more. This tactic can be seen across numerous concepts, tapping into the taste of well-loved meals, while resonating with the consumer demand for good-for-you ingredients. 


Disruptors in restaurant design are constantly seeking for new opportunities beyond the norm of mainstream. The dining experience is no longer limited to staff service and food quality, but encompasses the entire ambience and atmosphere. The typical restaurant scene is often pictured as a candle-lit, dimmed room filled with white-table-cloth-covered tables, but other concepts, especially in the fast casual segment, have taken to abandoned warehouses, old gas stations, and food halls. 

Disruption is now just an everyday process, whether in food, transportation, travel, health care, and more. The American consumer is not only ready for disruption, but for the first time, embracing it.