Are healthier food options the future for quick serve restaurants?
Have you ever noticed how many organic, gluten-free, and green-friendly food options are available these days? Between fitness tracking, calorie counting, food allergies and recycling, people seem more in tune with how they are treating their body and the environment around them than ever before.
We live in a generation that understands the effects of fitness, sustainability, GMOs and chemicals in our food, and the impacts to our health and environment. As a result, restaurants have adjusted their business strategies to provide food services and an environment that is cognizant of these growing concerns.
Indulging in fast food meals, while leading a healthy lifestyle, may seem to be a paradox at first. But as people’s priorities change, it’s only natural for the service industries to follow. Not only has an atmosphere of corporate social responsibility and environmentally sustainable practices been on the rise, but quick-service restaurants have, in many cases, been mandated to follow new stringent regulations. To keep up with these developments, while still meeting the needs of their guests, many quick serve franchises have made the following adjustments:
- Expanding the variety of menu options
- Caloric and nutritional transparency
- Reusable material packaging
- Cleanliness / focus on hygiene
- Revamped fitness oriented play areas for kids
One simple way to accomplish this sort of improvement is to openly disclose the caloric counts and nutritional value of their menu items, and include more healthy options. It’s not uncommon now to see children munching on healthy apple and tangerine slices as a side item instead of french fries. On-the-go breakfast menus now feature items like oatmeal or parfaits. You even see many of the most famous chains offering sandwich wraps over carb-heavy burgers for lunch. Fast serve food has even morphed to fast casual dinner style meals with tossed salads instead of sandwiches or chicken tenders.
Restaurants have even begun promoting health in their overall atmosphere. There is an increased focus on ensuring interactive play areas for kids are not only sanitary, but fitness-oriented. You’ll even find places using biodegradable and recycled paper containers, cups and wrapping.
By expanding the customer experience in these ways, quick-serve restaurants help connect their brand names with the enlightened consciousness of today’s customer. Healthier food options, transparent ingredient information and mindful ambience not only improves the customer experience, but can do their part to teach the next generation to be fitness, healthy and green-minded along the way.
We’d love to learn more about your business and talk about ways our FF&E team can help. Feel free to contact us.