The retail industry is facing major shifts and changes as mobile devices get smarter and consumers incorporate them further into their daily lives. From shopping to seeking out product information, consumers turn to their smartphones and other mobile devices more than ever. However, there are still some traditional holdouts in the retail environment. One of those holdouts, according to a report from RetailMeNot and Placed, is the coupon.

But today’s coupon usage looks very different from how it looked in the past when coupon clipping and printed circulars were commonplace. Today, more than 42% of consumers use mobile apps to find coupons, while about 35% use print media, according to the report. The report touched on some overall points that have also shown up in SmartBrief’s coverage of the food retail, consumer packaged goods and restaurant industries. We took a look at the report and broke down some of those points that have been covered throughout our newsletters over the past weeks:

Mobile apps are the most common place for consumers to search for coupons

According to the report, 59% of consumers use digital channels when looking for coupons, and 42% use mobile apps. (read more…)

Chef Jose Andres may be best known for his restaurant empire which includes Jaleo and China Poblano, as well as newer, more casual ventures like the Pepe food truck and the vegetable-focused Beefsteak. Andres’ restaurants are widely celebrated for their inventive, playful cuisine, and the chef is using his global network to recruit chefs and others in the industry to fight world hunger through World Central Kitchen. SmartBrief interviewed Andres on how the non-profit evolved and how it is working to find smart solutions to hunger and poverty.

How did World Central Kitchen evolve from DC Central Kitchen?

I was a young chef, brand new to Washington, when my partner Rob Wilder introduced me to Robert Egger and his DC Central Kitchen. It was a bolt of lightning to my mind, to see how food that would be wasted got redistributed, and people could turn their lives around. (read more…)

The 2016 National Restaurant Association Restaurant Hotel-Motel Show and BAR 16 event will begin next Saturday, May 21 in Chicago. The conference will once again occupy the city’s McCormick Place for four days filled with education sessions, cooking demonstrations and more than 42,000 attendees walking the show floor.

Over the course of the show, sessions will cover a range of topics, from nutrition and sustainability to franchising and workforce engagement. This year’s show kicks off at 10 a.m. with education sessions including “MenuTrends & The Changing Consumer” and “Cash In On Catering: The Secret To Boosting Profits.” Saturday morning will also mark the start of the National Restaurant Association’s Fast Casual Industry Council Meeting — a one-day educational and networking event held within the NRA Show.

This year’s Show will introduce an updated format for the traditional keynote presentation. NRA President and CEO Dawn Sweeney will lead an open discussion with three industry executives during “Signature ’16: Turn the Tables.” Sweeney will talk with Uber Everything’s Jason Droege, Red Robin President Denny Marie Post and The Kitchen’s Kimbal Musk on Sunday, May 22 at 2 p.m. (read more…)

From brick-and-mortar to mobile to social, today’s consumers are used to operating in a seamless world. Pretty much every industry has had to adapt to these consumer expectations, including food retailers and restaurants.

Often, the conversation about seamless consumer experiences is focused around e-commerce and mobile technology, but what about the other types of technology that have been developed around this concept? Cognitive computing, virtual reality and robotics are just some examples of the kinds of consumer-facing technologies businesses are using to create the most seamless consumer experience possible. So how are retailers and restaurants incorporating these technologies into their operations?

Cognitive computing
Cognitive computing is a new era of smart technology that uses machine learning to decipher consumer preferences and use that information to curate personalized experiences. The most famous use of cognitive computing is IBM’s Watson technology, but the field is growing and now there are opportunities for retailers to incorporate the technology into the shopping experience, both online and in stores. (read more…)

So you want to start recycling, but you don’t have a clue how to start.

Earlier, we suggested recycling your back-of-the-house cardboard as an easy first step. If you’re ready to take it further, consider the five steps outlined in a new Foodservice Packaging Recovery Toolkit from the Foodservice Packaging Institute and the National Restaurant Association.

Tune into our free April 21 webinar for more details on these steps: