Fruit, healthy proteins to increase in next two years

Contract management/B&I expect big growth in sandwiches and wraps.

Fruit, healthy proteins and yogurts/parfaits are on the rise for breakfast menus in the next two years, according to research from The Big Picture. For most operators, the predicted increase in these categories is due to providing healthier options for customers.

Hospitals

Yogurts/parfaits, at 39%, is the breakfast category that hospital operators expect to have the most growth in the next two years. Carl Hall, executive chef for Baylor Medical Center’s Frisco, Texas, campus, says parfaits will be popular because customers are looking for something that’s healthy, light and easy to grab in the morning. They are also looking for something different than traditional pancakes and eggs, Hall adds.

Contract/B&I

“We’re definitely seeing a group of people who are asking for healthy items at breakfast,” says David Cross, general manager for Sodexo at the Federal Aviation Administration in Washington, D.C. That’s why Cross is offering more healthy breakfast proteins such as turkey bacon and chicken sausage. He’s also seeing growth in sandwiches and wraps because customers are “looking for something that’s nutritious and that they can get quickly and go.” Cross offers sandwiches that use flatbreads, English muffins and croissants as the bread base. 

C&U

Although not colleges’ top breakfast growth category, ethnic entrées are expected to increase in sales, according to 27% of university operators. Edward Krol, executive chef at Youngstown (Ohio) State University’s Kilcawley Center, says he currently offers breakfast pizzas, burritos and tacos for his students. He has seen an overall increase in breakfast from younger and Hispanic students. “With the economic downturn and people eating out less for dinner, breakfast is the cheaper alternative when eating out,” he says, explaining his projected sales increase of ethnic entrées.

LTC/senior living

Growth in breakfast is fairly even among many of the categories. The area with the highest expected growth is healthy breakfast proteins, at 27%, with fruit (26%), traditional breakfast proteins (26%), eggs/omelets/quiche (23%) and baked goods (23%) following closely. Brad Lange, director of dining services at Park Regency in Chandler, Ariz., likens his breakfast to a Denny’s, saying residents can choose whatever they want, cooked to order. He says offering an assortment and giving customers the opportunity to choose is key in resident satisfaction. Lange also offers a weekly special, such as an omelet station, which helps keep interest up in the morning. Not all LTC/senior living directors expect a growth, however, with 25% of operators saying no category will grow in the next two years. 

Schools

Fruit is the top breakfast growth area for schools, with 57%—significantly more than in other markets—expecting this category to gain ground in the next two years. The finding isn’t a shock considering that schools on the National School Lunch Program must soon offer students one cup of fruit at the morning meal each day. The concern for some child nutrition operators is that the growth is driven by a federal mandate and not because of student demand. Many directors believe the produce will end up in the trash and not in students’ stomachs. 

More From FoodService Director

Ideas and Innovation
chicken dinner

For the last three years, we’ve hosted an event called Winner, Winner, Chicken Dinner. We sponsor the local chapter of Future Farmers of America to raise the chickens, and we have to arrange all the transporting from farms to the distributor, which keeps the birds in a freezer until we’re ready. We build hype by having students vote on the proprietary spice blend they would like on the chicken. It helps the nutrition team get involved in the educational process and showcase local food purchasing.

Ideas and Innovation
employees generation multicultural

We are no longer short staffed, ever. On a given day, missing two team members from a team of 50 would leave us 96% staffed. The actual choice of wording places a positive emphasis on those that did come to serve our guests and patients. We no longer use the phrase “short staffed”; this is a game-changer when we are challenging ourselves as culture facilitators or leaders.

Ideas and Innovation
food symbols allergens

To make safe food as accessible as possible for our guests with allergies, we are creating an allergen-friendly kitchen this summer. Students and community members will be able to use our mobile app to place orders for allergen-friendly food and pick them up at the central kitchen. The kitchen will also produce grab-and-go options that will be distributed across campus.

Ideas and Innovation
construction plans drawing tools calculator

When revamping an old cafeteria or building a new retail spot, the design process can feel like fitting together the pieces of a puzzle: What needs to fit in the space, and what’s the most efficient flow for staffers, cooks, diners and more?

Cathy Estes, administrative director of nutrition services at four northern Indiana hospitals that are part of the Franciscan Health network, faced the creation of a new in-house dining program at Franciscan’s Munster hospital. Amid all the big plans, design was one of the largest undertakings.

“I was looking at 5,000 square feet on a...

FSD Resources