About the author: Tricia Smith | SmartBlogs
Tricia Smith edits food, beverage and CPG briefs and manages SmartBlog on Food & Beverage. A former intern and writer at SmartBrief, she graduated from the Philip Merrill School of Journalism at the University of Maryland in College Park. You can follow her on Twitter @SB_Food.
Fast Casual continues to evolve, making the concept a moving target for restaurateurs who are trying to succeed in the market that accounted for 15% of all limited service restaurant sales in 2013, according to the “Top 150 Fast-Casual Chain Restaurant Report” from Technomic. A panel discussion presented Saturday by NRA’s Fast Casual Industry Council at the 95th annual NRA Show featured three executives from concepts that have managed to get it right and grow their business along with their brand reputation.[…] Continue Reading »
Understanding the implications of the 2010 health care law and how it affects specific employers can be a tricky business for restaurant operators. As VP of Health and Insurance Services for the National Restaurant Association, Randy Spicer leads the NRA’s Health Program business and strategic alliance with UnitedHealthcare — the country’s largest health insurance company with more than 25 million members.[…] Continue Reading »
As the healthy dining trend continues to gain steam, restaurants are not only competing with each other for consumers’ dining dollars, they also need to consider the growing amount of health-conscious eaters who choose to prepare food at home in order to have control over ingredients and portion size.
Offering a healthy menu with customizable options can help restaurants win these customers back and attract new ones.[…] Continue Reading »
By Tricia Smith on April 2nd, 2014 | 503062 comments on this postQ-and-A%3A+Consumers+turn+to+technology+for+guidance+on+healthy+dining+2014-04-02+12%3A00%3A11Tricia+Smithhttp%3A%2F%2Fsmartblogs.com%2F%3Fp%3D50306
Healthy Dining works to inspire chefs to create healthier options for consumers and help diners find meals that fit into a healthy lifestyle. Last fall, the initiative’s dining and nutrition guide, HealthyDiningFinder.com, launched a mobile site featuring 4,000 menu items served at more than 60,000 participating restaurants to make it even easier for consumers to find healthy options on the go.[…] Continue Reading »
By Tricia Smith on March 12th, 2014 | 500063 comments on this postThe+future+of+gluten-free%3A+Restaurants+still+weighing+whether+to+jump+on+the+bandwagon2014-03-12+12%3A00%3A56Tricia+Smithhttp%3A%2F%2Fsmartblogs.com%2F%3Fp%3D50006
The gluten-free market continues to grow as food companies and restaurants expand their offerings to cater to consumers’ appetite for gluten-free foods. Gluten-free dishes appeared on 9.4% of menus in 2013, compared with 1.8% in 2009, according to Datassential’s MenuTrends Database. But even as the segment grows and “gluten-free” continues to be a buzzword among consumers and foodservice professionals, gluten-free dishes still account for less than 1% of menu items across all categories.[…] Continue Reading »