With consumers’ desire for innovation increasing and snacking becoming more of a habit, mealparts such as starters, small plates and sides are well-positioned to gain share of stomach, Technomic has claimed.
The company’s latest Small Plates & Sides Consumer Trend Report explores how these mealparts can help foodservice brands maximize existing opportunities and overcome potential challenges.
“Starters, small plates and sides are flexible menu offerings that provide the innovation consumers seek at a lower risk than larger menu items,” explains Anne Mills, senior manager of consumer insights at Technomic.
“While the lower price points and smaller portions mean these mealparts are great platforms for experimentation, rising menu prices increase the risk. As prices rise, brands must work to maintain, if not boost, value perceptions through bolder innovation and elevated quality.”
Key takeaways from the report include:
- Overall, 35% of consumers are very likely to order either appetizers or small plates as a midafternoon snack, if offered
- The most preferred lunch sides at limited-service restaurants include fries (63%) and onion rings (40%)
- 60% of consumers say it is important that they can choose the side that comes with their entree
The report is available here: https://www.technomic.com/available-studies/consumer-trend-reports/starters-small-plates-sides