instore - Sept + Oct 2015 - (Page Commissary - 10)
By John Unrein
egetables are taking over the
American sandwich as a dominant ingredient rather than a side
note. "Veg-centric" - not vegetarian - is
a macro trend inﬂuencing menus across
all segments of the retail foodservice
industry, according to new research by
Culinary Visions Panel. Vegetables are
moving from side dish to center of the
plate with new and interesting techniques. Most of these new menu items
use protein sparingly to provide layers
of craveable ﬂavor. The next great sandwich concept could incorporate a unique
mix of vegetables, with a protein garnish.
Veg-centric sandwich concepts especially
take center stage with younger consumers, according to Culinary Visions Panel,
which developed 10 next generation sandwich concepts exclusively for this study
to ﬁnd out how adventurous consumers
are when it comes to trying new sandwich
ingredient combinations. Four of the top
ﬁve sandwich concepts preferred by millennials were veg-centric in nature.
Sharon Olson, executive director of Culinary Visions Panel, says her group's
study reveals there is real potential to delight a wide range of customers because
some concepts may be vegetarian and
yet many include meat as well. "I think
consumers are telling us they are ready
for delicious, ﬂavorful and craveable vegcentric sandwiches," she says.
Millennials may be a good target, as more
than one-third of these consumers would
try the vegetable sandwich, while only a
quarter of those ages 35-54 would choose
the meat-free option. The vegetable
sandwich, which ranked second overall
with millennial consumers, included ingredients like arugula, tomato, avocado,
caramelized onion and melted cheese between crispy plantains.
The veg-centric theme continues, with
a third of respondents interested in the
10 * SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2015 *
omelet sandwich, which was rated third
among the 10 concepts tested. This combines spinach, pepper jack cheese, roasted red peppers, and a sprinkling of bacon
in an egg wrap.
Also highly rated with millennials was
the "salad cone," a salad-as-a-sandwich
concept that combines grilled chicken,
romaine lettuce, onion, tomato and
ranch dressing in cone-shaped brioche.
And rounding out the top 5 was the Paleo
sandwich with avocado spread, romaine
lettuce, peppers, fresh herbs and accents
of garlic marinated shrimp, enrobed in
an almond ﬂour wrap.
A More Prominent Role
Sandwiches continue to be featured more
prominently on retail foodservice menus
than similar handheld fare, such as burgers, hot dogs and pizza, according to Packaged Facts, a Rockville, Maryland-based
research ﬁrm. Many operators reinvent
the lunchtime staple with gourmet and
healthy twists, as well as global ﬂavors.
"Leveraging progressive food sourcing
and food preparation practices, restaurants and food manufacturers are increasingly focused on providing sandwiches
that are fresh, naturally produced, locally
sourced, and either culturally authentic or
genuinely creative in culinary concept,"
says David Sprinkle, research director of
Packaged Facts. Packaged Facts identiﬁed eight sandwich types trending in
retail outlets, driven by international or
regional inﬂuences and demand for bold
ﬂavors and healthy options.
Fresh produce piles high on a single slice
of bread to create an enticing and vegetarian-friendly "still life of a sandwich,"
Packaged Facts said.
Tortas and cemitas
A growing interest in international sand-
wiches and street foods has given rise to
two Mexican mainstays. Typically served
on a long crusty roll, tortas may be eaten
cold, hot, grilled or toasted with such ﬁllings as avocado, poblano, jalapeño, ham
or adobo meat. Cemitas commonly are
served on an egg roll topped with a sprinkling of sesame seeds.
Croque monsieur and madame
The rise of global cuisine gives way to the
resurgence of two familiar French favorites with modern-day tweaks. Conventional croque monsieurs are grilled ham
and cheese sandwiches with béchamel
sauce. The croque madame comes topped
with a poached or fried egg.
Rooted in the comfort food trend, brisket
is hot even on non-barbecue menus, Packaged Facts says. This versatile meat may
be served in a number of different ways,
from classic to distinctly contemporary.
Featuring layers of ham, roast pork,
Swiss cheese and pickles, the paninistyle Cuban sandwich is in the midst of
a revival, as chefs experiment with new
ingredients and upgrades.
Sweet and savory sandwiches
Sweet and savory combine to create a
sophisticated twist on traditional sandwiches. Usage of jam in sandwiches
served in restaurants rose to 11% in 2014,
with use in hot sandwiches nearly doubling during that time, Packaged Facts
Protein-based salad sandwiches
Classic tuna, chicken and salad sandwiches have gone gourmet in recent
years with fancier ﬁllings, condiments,
breads and sides, Packaged Facts says.
Handhelds are a hit in the morning, when
many consumers are grabbing breakfast
on the go. Operators may appeal to more
consumers by leveraging such descriptors as "natural," "local," "seasonal" or
"sustainable," which are four times more
likely to appear on non-breakfast items,
according to Packaged Facts.
Keeping in touch with consumer preferences continues to pay for all dayparts.
Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of instore - Sept + Oct 2015
instore - September + October 2015
Editor's Note - Fresh in Focus
Table of Contents
News - On Our Radar
Trending - Breads and Rolls
Trending Deli Meat
The Future of Celebrations
Consumer Insights - A New Consumer Group Worth Watching
Diet Trends - Consider Non-GMO
Commissary Insider - Insight Insider: The FreshOne Advantage
Research and Development: Culinary-Inspired Convenience Foods
Sandwich Spotlight: Veg-centric Sandwiches
Assembling Foods: Safety First
Feature Profile: Dunford Bakers
Shopper Demographics - How They Shop
Equipment Solutions - The Case for Hot Foods
Valentine's Day - Ready Your Heart
Flavor Trends - What's Trending in Chocolate
Product Spotlight - Rising Trends
Specialty Cheese - Communal Cheese
Product Showcase/Ad Index
instore - Sept + Oct 2015