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Bringing breakfast
out of home

As caterers increasingly look to invest in unexploited niches to stay competitive, out of home breakfast occasions – of which there are currently 1.1bn in the UK* – are taking on a whole new edge. Why not increase your revenue by identifying your potential breakfast trade and creating a menu to suit

Start as you mean to go on

Full English breakfastResearch shows that the fry-up is still the favoured breakfast out of home, with 56 per cent of people tucking into one, while other cooked options and hot rolls/sandwiches account for 15 and 14 per cent of the market respectively.

The problem is, according to Mintel, restaurateurs and caterers are failing to offer consumers the right breakfast solutions, with 52 per cent of people saying they haven’t eaten breakfast out of home in the last three months. According to Mintel Menu Trends, the future is about customisation, grazing, time-poor consumers, premiumisation and value for money. But how can this insight be turned into profit?

Tal Drori, brand manager for Heinz Foodservice, says: “The simple way for caterers to initiate their breakfast action plan, as both Heinz Foodservice and Mintel research shows, is to tackle the fact that 36 per cent of consumers find it more convenient to eat at home. To help operators crack this under-capitalised market, we have identified four key consumer types to maximise profitability.”

Maclay wakes up to breakfast

PancakesKeith Deary, catering manager for Scottish pub operator Maclay Inns, says caterers are often unaware of the captive audience right there on their doorstep. “Three of our pubs now open for breakfast at 9am,” says Deary.

“While all three venues are doing really well because they fill a gap in the market, the Victoria Café bar in St Andrews is a particular success due to the proximity of the university and demand from students. When it first introduced the breakfast menu, including fry-ups, cereals and baguettes, it was serving up to 400 meals a session, which has levelled out to about 200. The key to introducing breakfast is to start by opening an hour earlier, then two and keep assessing the situation. Breakfast is a powerful niche to break into if the demand is there.” 

Choosing the right breakfast sellers

Decision makers in the catering industry need to be in the know: how their business fits into the bigger picture, who their customers are, which products they should be investing in and how they can profit from their choices with a competitive edge.

The four consumer types are:

Fuel Stop

Food is fuel and the cooked breakfast is part of this breakfaster’s daily routine. If your customer base is mostly male and blue collar, make sure that they know you are offering the perfect start to their day with your value-for-money menu.

Grab & Go

These consumers lead busy lives, are extremely time poor and regularly skip breakfast. The key to attracting them is through convenient breakfast options they can take away with them, such as pre-cooked bacon that can be speedily placed in the bread product of their choice.

It is also important that the Grab & Go breakfasters can personalise their meals with convenient sauce solutions that mean more portion control, less mess
and complement everything from a bacon sandwich to a cold slice of Spanish omelette.

Healthy Choice

Healthy breakfastHealthy eating has now become mainstream, but a satisfying, yet guilt-free, hot breakfast can be hard to track down. Offering baked beans is just one way of meeting this demand. While you’re at it, why not promote the fact that one serving of baked beans not only contributes to the ‘five-a-day’ target, but also provides:

  • Complex carbohydrates for sustained energy release
  • A fifth of recommended daily protein needs
  • More than a fifth of a pregnant woman’s recommended folic acid needs
  • Calcium, magnesium, and phosphorous for children’s developing bones
  • More than 40% of recommended daily fibre needs.

Total Treat

At the opposite end of the scale are those who like to treat themselves with a real slap-up breakfast as a once-in-a-while indulgence.

This trend for premiumisation is embodied by hotels such as Malmaison and the growing number of independent cafés, pubs and restaurants that offer high-quality local produce. If you are offering products with provenance on your menu, make sure you shout about it as you will probably find that consumers are prepared to pay a little bit extra for good, locally sourced food.

Heinzsight - insight from HeinzHeinz Foodservice has launched a new online resource tool – Heinzsight – to help caterers understand more about their customers in relation to the breakfast occasion and grow their businesses more profitably.

Through data-led profiling this new site matches businesses with recommended products and comes up with suggestions on how to make menus more appealing, profitable and successful. Chefs can also take advantage of the dedicated ideas area that offers menu inspiration, merchandising know-how and promotional solutions.

To find out more log onto or call 0800 575755.

*Source: Horizons

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