Plant-Based Menus Are Not a Passing Fad

Canadians can expect more veggies on their plates in the coming years thanks to growth of so-called plant-based restaurant concepts—those that offer contemporary vegan and vegetarian fare to a growing audience of consumers who avoid meat, at least on occasion. Restaurants are showcasing more veggies as a main attraction, sometimes with full menus devoted to […]

5 Ways Expanding Dayparts Can Help Boost Sales

Consumers are growing more flexible in terms of when and how they seek and consume food and beverage, as demonstrated by the rise of snacking, small plates, all-day breakfast and on-demand delivery. Restaurants keeping a pulse on the foodservice industry are likely already expanding their dayparts in an effort to maximize their sales. Here are […]

Should Chipotle Bet On Better Burgers?

On Wednesday, Chipotle confirmed that it may add a better-burger concept to its portfolio. The new addition would stand alongside Chipotle’s other fast-casual spinoffs, ShopHouse Southeast Asian Kitchen and Pizzeria Local, setting the stage for growth beyond Mexican food. Despite its recent health-related setback, Chipotle continues to be a very successful company thanks largely to […]

Foodservice Distribution 2.0: Algorithms Optimize the Value Chain

The $268 billion foodservice supply chain is competitive and efficient with the notable exception of how business is transacted between independent operators and their suppliers. Technomic research and observations reveal that foodservice distributor sales representatives (DSRs) spend most of their workday visiting accounts to collect orders, in large part because the prevailing business model and […]

Is McDonald’s Turning the Corner?

For the first time in two years, McDonald’s saw positive same-store sales in the U.S. in the third quarter of 2015. The fourth-quarter comparable sales results, released at the end of last month, surpassed expectations even further, jumping 5.7% for U.S. stores from a year earlier. Subsequently, stock prices reached an all-time high in February, […]

McDonald’s Makes Moves in Coffee Segment

In December, McDonald’s Canada launched its first standalone McCafé at Union Station in Toronto and announced plans to open a second in the city in 2016. Although the concept saw little success during testing in the U.S., the McCafé brand has been an effective operation in Canada. Since launching its McCafé coffee lineup at restaurants […]

Movie-Themed Marketing

Restaurant chains are utilizing partnerships with theatre operators and production studios to introduce movie-themed deals. Some of these promotions are serving as a way for restaurant chains to take advantage of the hype surrounding particular box-office hits. Other chains are giving away movie tickets with meal purchases to help boost both value perception and sales. […]

Restaurant Consumers Craving Value Don’t Necessarily Follow the Money

Throughout my career covering the restaurant industry, I have fixated on the “price” part when discussing or learning about the price-value equation. Maybe it’s because I’m a child of the ’90s, meaning two of my formative cultural touchpoints were “show me the money” and “Mo Money Mo Problems.” More likely it’s because I graduated college […]

Top 500 Brands Keep Franchisees Close — and Sales Growth Closer

If I had a dollar for every time over the past five years that I’ve heard, “Franchisees are just better at running stores than giant corporate brands,” I would probably have enough money to pay any chain’s franchisee fee and build a new restaurant. Such conventional wisdom seemed airtight recently, as franchise-unit openings have far […]

McDonald’s Shakes Up Menu with Kale

Kale’s rise on the menu in Canada initially took root in the full-service restaurant arena. But the dark leafy green’s popularity is now growing across segments, with McDonald’s in Canada rumored to be introducing kale in three salads. We’ve written recently about kale’s popularity on Canadian restaurant menus, but McDonald’s move is bigger than kale. […]