September 2013: Emerging Trends

Catch up on September's Emerging Trends, including sausage skirmish and boomers eating out more.

Published in FSD Update

Boomers Eating Out More

There’s a shift in the clientele at restaurants. Before the recession, young adults were the diners you’d most likely see in a restaurant, according to the NPD Group. Adults under the age of 48 visited restaurants an average of 240 times per year. Post-recession, it’s an older crowd that’s dining out. Those 55 and older visited restaurants an average of 220 times last year, which is the highest of any age group, according to the research firm.

Sausage Skirmish

There’s another battle brewing in the meatless movement, this time in Germany, a country known for its love of sausage. In a campaign proposal, the Green Party says it wants to eliminate meat one day a week from cafeterias located in federal government institutions. The pledge has some in the country outraged. Members of the Free Democratic Party have been seen dining on meat outside the Green Party’s headquarters. The Free Democratic Party says dining decisions should be left up to the individual. One Green Party representative was surprised by the backlash, saying, “It’s not about dictating people what they should eat,” according to The World News. “Instead, we want to start a discussion about what high meat consumption means. It is not sustainable.” Sounds similar to the discussion being had in the U.S.

4.1 billion

The amount, in pounds, of food waste in the United States from food manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers in 2011. Seventy-three percent of that was converted to animal feed and 20% was reused as fertilizer, according to a new study by the Food Waste Reduction Alliance, Grocery Manufacturers Association, the Food Marketing Institute and the National Restaurant Association.  

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Industry News & Opinion

Hutchinson Middle School in Hutchinson, Minn., invited students to help serve lunch in an effort to encourage their peers to try new, healthy recipes, Hutchinson Leader reports.

The students, who are part of the school’s Students in Action Club, created posters to advertise the new meal and helped serve it to students during lunch.

The school’s kitchen manager, Janet Schmidt, said that around 37 more students than normal got in line to try the meal. The school plans to have students from the club help serve lunch once every month.

Read the full story via Hutchinson...

Industry News & Opinion

In an effort to trim costs, the country’s largest senior living company laid off 100 staff members, including regional dining services directors, reports Senior Housing News .

Not all employees who were laid off will technically leave the company, Senior Housing News notes, as some will be reassigned to alternative positions. Brookdale recently posted third-quarter earnings that fell short of analysts’ expectations and that the company’s CEO called disappointing.

At the end of last year, the Brentwood, Tenn.-based company employed 53,000 workers on a full-time basis, and...

Industry News & Opinion

After receiving mixed feedback from parents, Randolph County School District in Asheboro, N.C., is inviting parents to tour the district’s kitchens and cafeterias to see how the food for school meals is made, Fox 8 reports.

School officials say that the tours, part of the district’s first Food Day for Parents, will give parents an inside look at the upkeep of the facilities, as well as enable them to sample some food and see how the district is upholding USDA guidelines.

Officials also hope that the tours will provide them with more guidance on what parents and students are...

Industry News & Opinion

After fielding complaints from parents and students, Sodexo is launching an initiative to improve dining services at Emerson College in Boston, the Berkeley Beacon reports.

The initiative will kick off this month with an event dubbed Fresh Start, marking the start of several moves aimed at improving service—including the hiring of a new executive chef, the addition of a second sous chef, and retraining current staff on food preparation and presentation.

Members of the Emerson community will also be able to share feedback through the introduction of monthly forums, as well...

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