5 Seafood Restaurant Trends To Look Out For This Year

5 Seafood Restaurant Trends To Look Out For This Year

Although, significant overall growth is not in the forecast for seafood dishes in the foodservice sector, there are five trends to look out for in 2018.

According to a food industry market research firm, Datassential’s Seafood Keynote report as covered by “SeafoodSource,” seafood in breakfast and brunch dishes is rising in popularity along with patron’s willingness to explore various kinds of seafood.

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Consumer Planning Program: How to Better Understand Your Customer

On this episode of On Foodable Weekly, we talk to some of the instrumental players in creating IFMA’s Consumer Planning Program. The Consumer Planning Program, or CPP, was a collaboration between IFMA and Datassential to dive deeper into the consumer mindset and find out why consumers pick a food-service venue, how those decisions are made and what manufacturers (and operators) can do to influence those decisions.

CPP began in 2012 when IFMA realized they were not as in touch with the consumer as they wanted to be and so the association dedicated resources to really building that understanding and relationship. This began their research into consumer needs and purchase motivations.

As Coca-Cola’s Ben Shanley put it, “At the end of the day from a manufacturing perspective, we’re trying to create consumer demand for our products and with all the changes that are going on right now in the industry it still all has to start with consumers.”

This initiative has been aimed at reaching consumers and helping brands understand their customers better. The team conducts qualitative research like focus groups with consumers to gather information and understand the language consumers use when they talk about their ‘away-from-home’ meals. That data is then validated through thousands of survey interviews– providing a lot of insight on what consumers are looking for.

Foodservice professionals can join the Consumer Planning Program and be a part of the committee that drives study topics and receives annual reports. Find out more about CPP here.

Supply Chain Optimization and Best Practices

Operators around the world are facing supply chain issues such as inventory placement, manufacturing costs, and transportation and distribution costs.

In order to improve efficiency and increase profitability across the industry, the International Foodservice Manufacturers Association (IFMA) created the Supply Chain Optimization Committee (SCO).

Stemming from best practices developed by IFMA, the Supply Chain Optimization Committee is a way for chain operators, manufacturers, and distributors to collaborate and share the challenges they are facing, the solutions they have come up with– as well as data they have analyzed. The group also addresses the critical issues of stakeholders.

The SCO committee is made up of a couple different sectors. The Development board consists of chain operators, manufacturers and distributors. Other companies like Datassential and Havi (and of course IFMA) offer assistance behind the scenes with data analytics and supply chain services.

Operators might ask, “Why should I participate?”

Data from top industry leaders is imperative for analysis and results. That input gives insights on the current state of the industry. Such challenges like forecasting and speed to market are discussed.

For example, Cullen Andrews from Dot Foods notes “Forecastings tough. So I think everybody would say the silver bullet is, “Well if the forecast is right, then no problem!” There really isn’t a lot of planning that has to occur. And I think what we’ve all agreed to is that we have to come together with one primary assumption which is that the forecast likely will not be accurate.”

You can register for upcoming Supply Chain Optimization meetings here!