Awareness of Canadian food and beverage trends and changing consumer preferences can help industry exporters better target their marketing and sales in Canada.
According to Restaurants Canada, total food service sales in Canada are projected to reach $88.7 billion in 2018, with millennials as the key drivers of growth.
The hottest trends that consumers are asking for include:
- Healthy and fresh foods,
- Convenience foods like meal kits and portable snacks,
- Authentic dips,
- Spices, seasonings,
- Flat breads,
- Grass-fed beef,
- Sustainable seafood,
- Artisan ice cream,
- Craft beer microbrews, and
- Specialty ice tea.
However, since the rapid rate of growth is expected to level off with consumers becoming more cash strapped, food service operators are mining for margins and reducing operating costs wherever they can, including sourcing less expensive ingredients.
One of the hottest topics in the industry is mobile ordering, since it accounts for 1 in 3 of all orders (and growing). This makes an online and mobile presence more important than ever.
Although most millennials go online, it’s important to note they are not a homogenous cohort; one-third of millennials are visible minorities and are seeking authentic and diverse tastes, not just ethnic cuisines; 34% of millennials want organic; 50% care where food is sourced, and if it is sourced responsibly.
Because people have busier lives, solutions that target time and convenience are a good opportunity; meal kits are trending up. Furthermore, consumers increasingly want transparency in terms of what is in products, making package labelling very important.
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