Q.S.R.s succeeding in lunch salad category

by FoodBusinessNews.net Staff
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CHICAGO — If a salad is the desired product, consumers are more likely to consider going to a quick-service restaurant before a quick-casual restaurant, according to Technomic, a research and consultant organization for the food industry.

This finding holds especially true at lunch, but full-service casual dining restaurants still top other categories as a resource for salad. The success of quick-service restaurants in the salad category may be attributed to extensive efforts to improve and promote salads.

"At lunch, consumers are frequently focused on convenience, but still want high quality at a lower price," said Darren Tristano, executive vice-president of Technomic information services. "The quick-service players have been highly successful in delivering on that formula."

Mr. Tristano also said quick-casual restaurants might need to step up their efforts to promote artisan items and create new signature salad dishes all while keeping prices competitive.

Additionally, Technomic found ethnic trends are strong among salads with a focus on southwest, Asian and Mediterranean flavors — a shift from Cajun and buffalo flavors that used to be popular. Blue cheese, along with other cheeses of strong flavor, also is increasing in popularity.

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