How Rich's Helps Define Clean Label and Sustainability

How Rich's Helps Define Clean Label and Sustainability
  • Rich’s vice president of Health and Authenticity, Jen VanDeWater, shares the company’s efforts on clean labeling and authenticity in their products.

On this episode of The Barron Report, Jen VanDewater, Vice President of Health and Authenticity at Rich Products Corporation, sits down with our host Paul Barron to discuss how a large company like Rich’s is addressing concerns over clean labeling and authenticity in their products, among other topics.

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Why East Hampton Leads The Top 50 Sandwich Innovators List

Why East Hampton Leads The Top 50 Sandwich Innovators List

After a quick stint at law school, Hunter Pond decided his true passion laid with the restaurant business.

“I just felt this gravitational pull to the industry and it was strong enough... [that] I dropped out of law school after one semester,” said Pond. “...It was a rough three months trying to convince everybody that this was the right move for me.”

On this episode of The Barron Report, our host, Paul Barron, sits down with Hunter Pond, CEO of East Hampton Sandwich Co. to learn how this concept came to be and made its way to become the top Sandwich Innovator concept from our free Top 50 Sandwich Innovator Report.

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How Rich's is Helping Combat Food Waste Through Product Solutions

How Rich's is Helping Combat Food Waste Through Product Solutions

“[Consumers] expect the exact same product that they would get if they sat down in the restaurant when they get it delivered to their house… so packaging is really important,” says Diana Schaefer, Associate Customer Marketing Manager for Rich Products. “If you have a sauce or dressed product you want to make sure it’s just as fresh when it gets to the customer.”

According to the National Restaurant Association, it is estimated that 70 percent of customers will be ordering food off of restaurant premises by 2020. Foodable Labs has identified that catering order interest has increased 32.5 percent in the past year with the Top 100 restaurant chains. In this episode of The Barron Report, host Paul Barron sits down with Diana Schaefer to explore the latest catering trends to make sure foodservice operators are not missing an opportunity in the category of catering.

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How Rich's Is Helping Foodservice Professionals Create Plant-Based Menu Items

How Rich's Is Helping Foodservice Professionals Create Plant-Based Menu Items

“The big key point for operators… is focus on flavor, focus on that authentic experience, and people will want to eat your plant-based menu item because it’s delicious,” says Julie Altobello, Senior Marketing Manager of Health and Authenticity at Rich Products Corporation.

As Foodable Labs has identified in the past, there is a 78.4 percent increase in the past 18 months of consumer discussion around plant-based menus. In this episode of The Barron Report, host Paul Barron sits down with Julie Altobello to explore this topic further and discuss plant-based trends, sectors driving trend growth, and how the plant-based trend looks like across different age cohorts.


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Plant-Based Food Has Been One of the Drivers of Consumer Trends For First Half of 2018

Plant-Based Food Has Been One of the Drivers of Consumer Trends For First Half of 2018

In this Special Report, our host Paul Barron takes the time to share with us some of the most interesting pieces of data from the Mid-Year Consumer Trends report.

Our sister company, Foodable Labs, analyzed 162K food influencers and 6.2 million conversations to determine what lays at the heart of consumer trends for the first half of 2018. As Paul Barron points out in this podcast, what constitutes a 'food influencer' for the purposes of this report, is an individual who's had five engagements with a restaurant a month, in terms of frequency.

There are five categories that the Mid-Year Consumer Trends report is based on and in this special podcast, you'll listen to Paul Barron's analysis of the data.

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The Facebook Data Debacle

The Facebook Data Debacle
  • 1:06 - The Story of Cambridge Analytica and Facebook

  • 4:44 - The First Violation

  • 5:52 - The Value Proposition of FB: You Cant Opt Out

  • 7:07 - The Rise of Social Media Data Gathering

  • 10:19 - The Impact on Restaurants

  • 11:25 - Foodable Labs Analyzes Facebook Engagement

  • 15:18 - Can Facebook bounce back?

  • 17:20 - Chief Security Officer Alex Stamos

  • 20:17 - Facebook Social Restaurant Visits DOWN 17%

  • 21:47 - Foodable Plus: 10 Tips for Preparing for the Mass Exodus of Facebook

Facebook has been dominating news headlines this week and for good reason. CEO Mark Zuckerberg has been testifying to Congress on the topics of data security and how the social media giant has been trying to improve.

There’s a lot to consider here: How did this impact the election? Is my data safe? Is it finally time to get off the grid?

But before we take drastic measures, take a minute to join Paul Barron for a thought-provoking discussion about what happened and how this scandal may be affecting your restaurant. Didn’t think about that? No worries, we’ll cover everything from how users are engaging with your FB content to how this data debacle is impacting your restaurant sales.

Cambridge Analytica

This is where our story begins. Cambridge Analytica hired a professor to create a Facebook app that collected user data. You’ve seen those fun but useless personality quiz apps on Facebook, right? Right. Users who authorized this app gave the app access to their data like their "Likes". But not just their own data, the data of their entire friend network. This feature was removed in 2014 but the damage was already done.

The important thing to note here is that, up to this point, Cambridge Analytica hadn’t done anything wrong. This was completely legal and in line with Facebook's guidelines in 2014. But when the professor sold the data to Cambridge Analytica, that’s when they violated the Facebook user agreement, which prohibited the sale of Facebook data to third party companies. Facebook removed the professor’s app and demanded that he and all third parties immediately destroy the data but up until now it is believed that Cambridge Analytica still has some or all of the data.

The Impact on Restaurants

Now people across the globe are understandably upset. There are a number of arguments to be made. But what does all this commotion mean for the restaurant industry? Well, as Paul explains, Facebook engagement is down meaning you’ll be having a harder time connecting with your audience using the platform. Social Restaurant Visits through FB are also down.

So, is it time to jump off the Facebook bandwagon? Listen in and find out!

And after you listen to this podcast, join us on Foodable Plus for 10 Tips to Prepare You for the Mass Exodus of Facebook.

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Scratch Cooking Revives Traditional Views of Casual Dining

Scratch Cooking Revives Traditional Views of Casual Dining

On this episode of The Barron Report, brought to you by Kabbage, the Tupelo Honey team joins Paul Barron in a discussion of what makes brands successful in today's market.

Tupelo Honey was founded in Asheville in 2001 as a revival of Southern food and traditions rooted in the Carolina Mountains. With 15 total locations in 7 states, Tupelo's Southern spirit is infused into every bite of their flavor driven dishes.

CEO Steve Frabitore bought the restaurant in 2008 and it's been growing ever since.

On this episode, VP of Operations and Beverage Director Tyler Alford; and VP of Culinary and Corporate Executive Chef Eric Gabrynowicz take us through the nitty gritty of what has made Tupelo one of Foodable's Top Emerging Brands. 

Tupelo takes great pride in their sourcing. They believe that as a small conglomerate of restaurants, their ability to affect change is far greater than that of smaller, independents. Switching to an organic, locally-grown chicken in their restaurants accounts not for hundreds of dollars in change but hundreds of thousands of dollars.  

And their commitment to top quality culinary doesn't stop there. The beverage program at Tupelo Honey also speaks to the brand's commitment to improving the quality of casual dining chains. With kitchens that cook almost entirely from scratch, Chef Gabrynowics says transforming the beverage program to be more culinary-driven was not a far stretch to make. 

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Diets As A Belief Structure May Be Causing Consumers to Eat Out Less

Diets As A Belief Structure May Be Causing Consumers to Eat Out Less
  • Vegan, Paleo, Ketogenic, Mediterranean, TLC, and Dash Diet all have common principles.  

  • Restaurants should consider do more for these diet trends. 

It didn't seem long ago when losing inches off the waist was pretty much the sole goal of the dieting masses. Today? Well, "diet" is going deity; each "diet's" dogma filling people's stomachs with a sense of purpose and for some even hope.   People with epilepsy and diabetes are told the Ketogenic diet has massive and sustainable health benefits. It is reported that staying true to the Mediterranean diet with help you live longer and have fewer health issues on average. For us, restaurant people... let's not forget the biblical flood of people that changed the foodservice landscape forever with gluten-free requests and needs.   And, of course, there is the vegan diet, which is the best example of the "diet" becoming more about "this is what I stand for and believe" and less about the waistline.  In short, the consumer of today is less likely to frequent restaurants that don't consider their "diet" and restaurants the flock is growing. 

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HelloFresh and Grubhub Snatch Up Restaurant Customers

HelloFresh and Grubhub Snatch Up Restaurant Customers

Consumers today are looking to save time, money, and calories. And in trying to do that, it has completely changed how and where they eat. According to data from the USDA, at least 50% of U.S. food expenditures in 2014 we’re allocated towards food away from home. That number has steadily increased since they began collecting the data in 1929.

Additional USDA data shows that 62 percent of millennials surveyed in December 2017 reported purchasing prepared deli food, carry-out, delivery, or fast food within the last seven days.

Mostly fueled by trends to eat healthier meals in shorter amounts of time, consumers are more than willing to fork over some extra cash for convenience and time efficiency.

According to business insider, there is a massive unfulfilled market opportunity here.

“As of 2015, about $210 billion worth of food is ordered for delivery or takeout on an annual basis in the U.S., according to Morgan Stanley research. But two of the industry leaders, GrubHub/Seamless and Eat24, generated a combined $2.6 billion in food sales last year. This means the market is underpenetrated but massive, which will incentivize continued competition and, potentially, an influx of new entrants.”

Meanwhile, the meal kit industry has seen exactly that sort of influx. The meal kit industry was dominated by Blue Apron just one year ago. Now, though Blue Apron has managed to hold on to its lead internationally, their market share has more dropped more than 17 percent and now Hello Fresh has surpassed them as the largest meal kit company in the US. And other competitors like Home Chef and Sunbasket are now gobbling up those extra dollars.

But the overall popularity of meal kits is dipping. The Wall Street Journal recently reported that investors have all but abandoned the meal kits space. And data from Foodable Labs shows that all the top meal kit brands are showing decreases in their consumer sentiment ratings.

Still, the meal kit industry is a 1.5 billion dollar industry, and certain segments of our industry are heavily impacted by consumer crossover with meal kits and groceraunts. For example, 34.7% of fast casual customers also use meal kits or groceraunts, making them a direct competitor. QSR’s, on the other hand, are safest with only 12.3% crossover.

Check out the episode above and let us know what other data you want to see!

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These Consumer Trends Are Driving Restaurant Growth and Contraction

These Consumer Trends Are Driving Restaurant Growth and Contraction

On this episode of The Barron Report, Paul Barron analyzes Foodable Labs data around two generations that are causing major shakeups in the restaurant industry: Millennials and Generation Z. We look at the frequency of restaurant visits, guest counts, and popular social platforms within these groups to give your concept insights into how to win with this major market segment. 

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