Wednesday, March 31, 2010

The retail foodservice price + value + service equilibrium may have just reset!




The price, value, service equilibrium is resetting in Grocery stores, Restaurants and Convenience stores. The wildly successful Subway $5.00 foot-long stated it. The QSR value focused $1.00 menu propelled it and now the $10.00 Pizza may have signaled the bottom.

Enter the grocerant niche with ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat fresh prepared food. Consumers looking for new products, packaging and time saving options. They are attracted by the fresh prepared focus, and price points. Which provide a strong margin for increased profitability for the retailer.

All sectors have noticed a discontinuity in consumer food shopping behavior and all are fighting for share of stomach. Contributing to this displacement is a focus by on short term market metrics particularly price and away from the consumer. Which in turn has caused a loss is consumer traffic in some as important as price might be other attributes are much more important. The consumer is turning to the grocerant sectors ready-to-eat / ready-to-heat prepared food options in any sector that offers it.

Join me here on my blog for insights, information and inspiration. Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant or on Facebook at Steven Johnson

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Private Label food products must provide FREE samples to maintain or grow market share.


Supermarkets, Grocery Stores, Convenience Stores all know that sampling food products sparks sales. What we are beginning to see is private label pick up steam in the Grocerant sector. Many companies are now utilizing the use of samples on private label food products to build sales while national brands pick up advertising.

We all know the Whole Foods has had ready-to-eat food stations scattered about their stores and for quite some time. They have utilized sampling as a way to build customer product trial and loyalty. What is now interesting is watching Safeway’s lifestyle stores increase sampling and companies like COSTCO sampling their own private label ready to heat products in the store.

This is great, it has been proven time and after time that sampling food works. In a recent study published in Progressive Grocer on established brands sampling, “the sales lift the day of the event was 177 percent greater than the control group, which received no samples. It remained up 57% after the 20-week period.”

Restaurants and C-stores new or established brands, there is one thing you must continue to do is sample food products within your 4 walls. Research on restaurants show’s 33% of customers that arrive at your restaurant every day have never eaten in your unit. If you’re a national brand that does not mean they have not been exposed to the brand, but your unit is new too them. Capture that experience in a positive way! Sample, Sample, Sample, independents and regional players the opportunity is even greater!

Join me here on my blog for insights, information and inspiration. Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant or on Facebook at Steven Johnson

Monday, March 29, 2010

Retail foodservice discontinuity abating as fresh prepared ready-to-eat and ready to heat take hold.


Food retailers have an understanding of the unique balance between palate, price, pleasure and the consumer’s drive for qualitative distinctive differentiated new food consumables. This is one of the main reasons that the grocerant niche of prepared fresh ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat niche have continued to grow during this period of economic disruption. The food value proposition equilibrium for the consumer today balances; better for you, flavor, and traditional products all blended into something with a twist.

Mix & Match meal components including entrée’s, side dishes and oddly price points have driven sales of fresh prepared ready-to-eat and ready to heat foods. Manufactures are rapidly addressing the niche and some of the industry largest are lining up to assist Walgreens enter the grocerant niche. Walgreens is positioned better than most to capture a large share of the baby boomer’s with fresh prepared meals portioned for one or two with better for you value added components ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat.

Chipotle Mexican Grill and Panera Bread are successfully bundling mix & match options of perceived better for you meal components and winning customers. Whole Foods continues to expand prepared food options that are fresh and ready-to-eat. Success leaves clue and the grocerant niche is flourishing.

Join me here on my blog for insights, information and inspiration. Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant or on Facebook at Steven Johnson

http://www.foodservice.com/articles/show.cfm?contentid=4112&title=Restaurant Consumer Discontinuity

Saturday, March 27, 2010

A&P leverages grocerant niche Mix & Match to build sales “before the meal”!

In the northeast loaded with great grocerant players like, Wegmans, Sheetz and Wawa enter A&P, SuperFresh, Waldbaum’s and Pathmark with over 150 stores in New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, Delaware and Maryland will feature the new “Build Your Own” antipasto Program, which allows shoppers to choose from among such traditional Italian delicacies as cured deli meats, hard and soft cheeses, and marinated vegetables. This is a great Mix & Match program that empowers the consumer while building same store frequency.

This sampling event, which takes place today and Sunday, will offer items from well-known vendors including Capatriti, Victoria, Mezzetta, Rienzi, Ronzoni and Sorrento. After tasting the tempting wares on display, shoppers can then buy featured items to design their own personalized antipasto platters for home or office use.

Whole Foods has focused strongly on fresh prepared ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat food stations inside the store. On your next visit go between 4:30 and 6:30 Pm and watch the activity in the fresh prepared food section. It is exciting, interactive and participatory for consumer. If you not one the Whole Foods consumers it just fun to watch. It will be fun at A&P, SuperFresh, Waldbaum’s and Pathmark as well.

Join me here on my blog for insights, information and inspiration. Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant or on Facebook at Steven Johnson

Grocerant opportunities can be fun as well and profitable!



Top of the day to all of you! Let’s enjoy this weekend with some funny sayings. That I have hear or were shared with me on my blog. Please if you have any other you wild like to add, feel free to share in the space for comments below.

What is the funniest Chef or Hospitality saying that you have heard?

Here are some that have been shared with me!

• I’m sorry your opinion wasn’t in the recipe!

• Don’t make me poison your food!

• Cook free ……. wear a kilt!

• The last time I cooked hardly anyone got sick!

• Chemistry is like cooking, never lick the spoon!

• Only a fool argues with a skunk, a mule or a chef!

• I’m sorry your opinion wasn’t in the recipe!

• I cook therefore YOU EAT!

• I Love cooking with wine ……… sometimes I even put it in the food!

Join me here on my blog for insights, information and inspiration. Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant or on Facebook at Steven Johnson.

Friday, March 26, 2010

Home Cooking, the new normal is grocerant ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat food.


As long as multi- generational family’s gather for meals together, the demand for more divergent flavors will continue to permeate. Grocerant style food offerings allow for increased family integration, understanding and acceptance.

Consumers have been exposed to a plethora of flavors and have not the time to master the skill of cooking each. This growing trend is empowering the consumer to establish new customs and traditions in eating better, more flavorful food. The Grocerant niche is about convenient meal participation, differentiation and individualization.

What’s for dinner? If your cooking for an at home family meal for two, three, four, or five family members, chances are very good your buying several ready-to-eat or ready-to-heat food components. Grocery stores, convenience stores and restaurants are all bundling fresh prepared meal components for the home cook. The home cook is responding, buying individualized components. Manufactures are rushing in with new menu items, packaging and portion sizes.

Grocerant niche food retailers have an understanding of the unique balance between palate, price, pleasure and the consumer’s drive for qualitative distinctive differentiated new food consumables. Which is one of the main reasons that this nice continues to flourish during this period of economic disruption. The food value proposition equilibrium for the consumer today balances; better for you, flavor, and traditional products all blended into something with a twist.

In industry speak, differentiated does not mean different to the consumer it means familiar. That is where the Grocerant niche falls, it is consumer inspired, component driven and flavor familiar.

Alice May Brock said:”Tomatoes and oregano make it Italian, wine and tarragon make it French, sour cream makes it Russian, lemon and cinnamon make it Greek, soy sauce makes it Chinese, garlic makes it good.” I say: grocerant meal components bundled and portable make a family meal, a happy meal!

Grocerants food retailers allow customers to select from Italian, French, Russian, Greek etc. and utilize the components at home any way they like. The new American meal can be a composite of any prepared food components including entrée’s, side dishes, sauces and deserts that the individual may want and they can mix and pair them any way as well. Our society is a composed for people from all over the world, with different cultures, traditions and flavor preferences. The new American meal is a melting pot of flavor and choice.

Prepared ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat foods are now available for all and can be found at Convenience stores, Grocery stores, Restaurants, Mobile trucks all just waiting for the taking.

Foodservice branded and private label food manufactures are all vying for your attention. Ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat foods from swiss steak, meatloaf, baked salmon, rotisserie chicken, pizza and lasagna fresh prepared, portioned and portable in portions for one, two,, three or five are now available at most foodservice retail location. Most exciting is the opportunity for new start-up’s and regional manufactures to produce sustainable business built on local, fresh and unique flavor profiles. Legacy national brand manufactures are experiencing an increased consolidation and acquisition activities. They have taken there eye off the customer and increasing are missing many of the new points of grocerant food distribution.

Consumer are responding buying both private label and branded meal components in new food channels, experiencing new flavor profiles all the while individualizing the family meal. The foodservice industry is evolving with the consumer. For those companies looking for an opportunity for growth times have never been better.

Grocerants create happy meal times, by expanding the melting pot! In fresh prepared food, mix and match components and portability are required options. Understanding creating or identifying distinctive differentiated food consumable’s as an entity with identity by day part is an area that the fresh prepared grocerant food companies are excelling.


With a different view of the industry and the consumer the grocerant niche is bring new light and needed growth to the retail food industry via redevelopment and deployment of new products. Grocerant specialist can work with you to identify distinctive differentiated food consumables.

Success leaves clues; transformational times require focus and experience with a qualitative edge. Grocerants ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat food, should be the next step in your organizations success.

Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA is the global leader in the Grocerant niche. More about us: http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant or leave a comment or question below. If you would like to read the latest interview of Steve Johnson on Grocerants here is the link: an interview of Steven Johnson at: www.goodfoodsales.blogspot.com/2009/12/grocerants-steven-johnson-shares-his.html

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Better for you food, is better for the entire retail food industry!


It’s time for convenience stores to follow the grocery store lead into fresh prepared food! Yes, roll, roll, roll away roller grill! There are obvious success trends in the grocery channel that provide clues and opportunity for the convenience stores. With the success Whole Foods is finding with its fresh prepared food stations one need not look any further. However Central Market, Metropolitan Market, Harris Tetter and Safeway all are increasing customer frequency with fresh prepared food.

Recent research revealed “Deli-prepared foods represent roughly 60 percent of deli sales in the traditional grocery channel and continue to grow year over year. During the last 52 weeks, growth has concentrated on deli-prepared chicken (mostly driven by rotisserie chicken growth); deli sandwiches; deli dips, spreads and toppings (driven by hummus sales growth); sushi; and pizza (both pizza slice sales growth, as well as whole pizzas as part of a take-and-bake program).”

Convenience store operators can capitalize on the fact that consumers are looking for both individual and family meal options. They're interested in unique foods, often regional ethnic, and they want to purchase meal components a Mix & Match combo easily create a unique meal for the family at home.

Sheetz, Quick Chek and soon 7 Eleven will all provide the fresh ready-to-eat and or ready-to-heat meal component options. Including snacks like “Crunch Pak, a Washington state supplier of fresh sliced apples, created packaging specifically targeted to in-the-car snacking. Its mini bags of sliced apples and "Grab 'n Go" fruit cups are designed to fit into car cup holders and be eaten without a spoon, providing healthy snacking options for kids and parents alike.” Better for you is better for all.

Join me here on my blog for insights, information and inspiration. Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant or on Facebook at Steven Johnson

www.foodservice.com/articles/show.cfm?contentid=5512&title=Roll, Roll, Roll, Away Roller Grill!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Publix’s building food brands and customers in two sectors.


If one were to look at the Florida market, it would be easy to see how Publix could utilize their strengths in buying power, distribution and prime real-estate to start another authentic high quality chain. That is exactly what they are doing, this time in the restaurant niche. Publix’s ability to deliver with Crispers on the brand promise of authentic fresh salad concept has been proven.

Publix’s Grocery store has established a legacy of success in the Grocery sector. They are very proactive in developing within the grocery store footprint. Regionally developing customer focused grocerant prepared food that is bundled and sold as meal components. These professional ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat prepared foods offering were obviously steps too the success they are finding in the fast growing restaurant concept Crispers that they developed.

Publix understands that a brand is a promise, leveraging there buying power, distribution system and knowledge of the market Crispers is positioned to grow. While other national grocery retailers build Convenience stores. Publix is setting an example for other the likes of Wegmans, Safeway, Harris Teeter and others.

The convenience store sector is doing the same under with Sheetz leading the way with great grocerant food and free standing restaurant concepts of their own. Restaurant operators must hone there skill set to maintain an edge in the marketplace.

It will not be long before they role out the second concept focused on authentic and fresh as well. I suggest that it will be a Seafood dinner house. Publix can propel growth via a smaller footprint in a Seafood dinner house with the same focus on product quality, innovative décor and leveraging again there buying power and distribution system

Join me here on my blog for insights, information and inspiration. Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant or on Facebook at Steven Johnson.

Note: I have added a link today to a webpage about coffee! It's very interesting an maybe better for you.  Let me know what you think.

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Is Hand Held food becoming the food of choice?


Fresh prepared ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat food is currently driving most food sectors top line sales growth and bottom line profits. Particularly success can be found in the convenience store, grocery and Quick Service Restaurant sectors.

In a new study by R&I called 2010 New American Diner Study provides valuable clues into customers' habits and what they want and how they want to eat breakfast from restaurants.

Ranked number one was “Breakfast sandwiches (52.5%) by far are the most popular food choice for weekday breakfasts at restaurants, in particular among Gen Y diners, blacks, Southerners, single diners and diners with children. Pancakes, preferred especially by matures, blacks and Hispanics, rank second at 30.9%. Muffins, doughnuts and other sweet baked goods are a top choice for only 15.9% of consumers.”

Consumer preference for professional service, consistency, cleanliness speed of service was reflected in the same survey when asked Where they like to dine “Asked where they're more likely to dine out for breakfast on weekdays-at a chain or at an independent restaurant-69.7% say a chain; 30.3% say an independent. On weekends, chains lose some ground, with only 54% of diners saying they choose them. Among demographic groups, younger diners and Southerners are more likely to patronize chains; Northeastern residents are more likely to head to an independent establishment.”

How people consumer food is coming to the forefront of importance in research. More and more we see where consumer eat is directly related to how they want to eat and where they feel the most comfortable. Menu’s must reflect consumer preferences not just by chain menu but by region, or the world they are directly located.

Join me here on my blog for insights, information and inspiration. Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant or on Facebook at Steven Johnson.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

How to make the table for today’s family dinner!


Consumer desire to eat a meal together has never waned. What has changed is how they eat, where they eat and when then eat. The grocerant niche of fresh prepared food is increasingly driving sales in every retail food sector. Including contemporized comfort foods to your offerings will propel sales. Comfort food builds sales one component at a time! Portioning, positioning and proper product selection will drive sales.

Listed below are Foodservice Solutions top ten comfort foods that retailers should include as components in any fresh prepared food offerings. Differentiation does not mean different it means familiar with a contemporized twist!

1. Macaroni and Cheese

2. Soup - seasonal flavors

3. Mashed Potatoes

4. Chicken - Rotisserie or Fried

5. Grilled Cheese

6. Baked Beans

7. Salads & fruit

8. Sandwich fresh assembly

9. Pizza and or Pasta

10. Apple Pie or any thing chocolate

Join me here on my blog for insights, information and inspiration. Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant or on Facebook at Steven Johnson.

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Foodservice Solutions finds, American food is no longer just about the Hamburger it is a Melting pot of flavors and fun!


Contrary to popular belief and the rapid rate of new development within the hamburger niche American food is about more than a burger. The United States is evolving in a foodie’s wonderland consisting of a cornucopia of flavors textures and food delivery systems. We are entering an exciting time where flavor profiles from around the world have entered our foodservice marketplace and blended with traditional American fare to become even more reflective of a contemporize American society. The United States is truly a melting pot of flavors.

A Mintel study found “Mexican food has become so mainstream; it is hardly considered ethnic anymore. Nearly six in 10 respondents say they have cooked Mexican food in the past month. However, it's the Asian and Indian food segments that are driving the market's growth, with 11% and 35% growth, respectively, from 2006-08.

Chain Restaurants golden era’s roots can be traced to the US and yes in large part to the success of the Golden Arches. For the past 30+ years the US has been exporting restaurant concepts around the world. The era of the dramatic growth of the burger niche is about to cool. No need to worry, McDonalds and other will continue to thrive but the several competitors may need repositioning.

Recently we have witnessed a rise in the number of Global Restaurant chains exporting to there concept to the US. This trend will continue as the US dollar declines in value. The opportunity to success here is unlimited, the operation metrics unmatched and the consumers willingness to embrace different flavors, styles of food and differing modes of food delivery will propel this trend for many years to come.

Join me here on my blog for insights, information and inspiration. Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant or on Facebook at Steven Johnson.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat food prepared fresh is the new customer loyalty program.


Why is Walgreens entering the fresh prepared ready-to-eat and ready-to-eat grocerant niche! It’s all about building customer frequency, convenience and preferred preferences. In short it’s about meeting the customers need-set of today.

They are not alone; Wegmans, Whole Foods, Central Market, Sheetz and Wawa niche and sector leaders are too. All with a focus are building loyal customers with fresh prepared ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat portable food each has a successful program.

Bundling meal components into a 2010 style family meal is authentic when each bundled is orchestrated by a key family member! Empowering the consumer, while providing local fresh prepared foods is key to continue growth.

Restaurants are now countering with the Mix & Match offerings which are very empowering for the customers as well. Currently however the choice is limited to a small number of items at QSR limiting frequency draw. None the less this is a compelling choice for consumers.

Convenience stores, Grocery stores and restaurants are all vying for the same set of customers. Consumers do not believe in Channel Blurring it is simply industry jargon that only blinded or miss-guided marketing managers believe in.

Join me here on my blog for insights, information and inspiration. Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant or Steven Johnson on Facebook.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Brazil’s breakout economy may help Burger King breakout and move up in consumers minds.


Burger King Brazil introduced an integrated marketing campaign that is surprising customers by putting their faces on Whopper packaging! Proactive, interactive and consumer participatory this campaign is delighting consumer! Nicknamed WhopperFace the proactive brand validation of this campaign makes ready-to-eat prepared fresh food personalized, like no other! That’s brand buy in! The youtube link is provided.

Here’s how it works “Burger King uses a hidden camera to snap customers' photos and then prints them on their Whopper wrapper. Customers react with a variety of surprise, delight and even dismay. According to Ads of the World, the campaign was created by Ogilvy of Brazil.” The

Authentic original and in keeping with the brand’s mainstay motto “Have it your way” WhopperFace is sure to draw attention to Burger King. I asked industry veterans here in the US what they thing the following is a smattering of there answers.

1. Giles: “Personally I think it is brilliant! Even if you had a bad day and your picture looked horrible, it is the message that it sends that the food is made to order for you. I would just "throw the wrapper out" if I had a bad hair day. :)

2. I don't eat fast food, but I would certainly visit BK if they did this, just for the experience. Guess I could order a salad. Think of the PR and the new customer visits they would experience. Great way to get the word out on UTube, this is great marketing using the social network to spread the word

3. I think it’s great! How long until a US Franchisee brings it here? Not long I bet!

4. 1st mover can move from country to country, but the electronic age has neutralized the advantage. When hit the US? as soon as an operator decides to invest in camera and printer, assuming BK Corp can't nix it in the details. More interesting, will BK do anything if another operator rolls out first? Even more interesting - a novelty promo, so does the ROI pay? My guess is yes. There are many spinoffs here.

Join me here on my blog for insights, information and inspiration. Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant or Steven Johnson on Facebook.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

The American diet: eat your way thin! Top of the day to all!


Recent research on how effective menu calorie labeling is split. One report said it is working and will lead the way for consumer behavior change another from says no change has been seen. Those who scoff at menu labeling for calories or fat content, salt or carbs will themselves be laugh out of their C-level suites over time. The reason is consumer are in fact paying attention, it may be Pro or Con labeling but they are paying attention.

There are more diet books titles than restaurants in the US. My point is simple, whether they chose to eat items with fewer calories or not is not as important as consumer desire to EAT THERE WAY THIN!

Consumer will back menu labeling in cities, town and then statewide, they think they can eat there way thin they just want help. Its time to get ahead of this curve, if you’re a retail foodservice leader. The reality is; times they are a changing, these are great times for brand mangers. They have the ability to move a brand with the consumer creating real time relevance in a tumultuous marketplace.

Grocery stores, Convenience stores and Supermarkets are focusing on the higher margin grocerant prepared meals because that’s what the consumer wants and it’s profitable! Now if they make them better for you they will sell even at a faster clip. It is with certainty that I predict that companies like Whole Foods, Wegmans, Central Market, Sheetz and Wawa will show considerable leadership. If restaurateurs want to maintain marketshare they will step up on this issue as well.

Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA is the global leader in the Grocerant niche providing ready-to-eat and ready-to-eat insights, opportunity and information. For more read this article: http://www.anything4restaurants.com/blog/index.php/2009/07/restaurant-consumer-discontinuity-the-consumer-moved-first/

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Retail foodservice paradigm shift underway; the beneficiary is the fresh prepared ready-to-eat niche!


While spending patterns on retail food away from home began to turn in 2005 as we documented in our white paper: Restaurant Consumer Discontinuity the consumer moved first (see link below).

The one bright sector within foodservice is the grocerant niche of fresh prepared better for you foods that are found in Convenience stores, Supermarkets, Grocery stores and many Restaurants.

Not only is this sector growing the opportunity for other additional avenues of distribution are opening continually. Recently Walgreen’s announced that they are entering the fresh prepared food niche. That over time can provide an additional 15,000+ outlets to the mix!

Foodservice industry research leader Technomic’s Bob Goldin when speaking about the restaurant sector.
recently stated “Over the next five years, we anticipate the industry will face major macro-economic headwinds including a high level of un- and under-employment, a sharp increase in lower-income households, weakness in the housing market, increased borrowing costs, and flat wages. From a demographic perspective, the rapidly aging population cannot be considered anything but a negative for the industry since older consumers use foodservice less often than younger groups. Further, the boost the industry received in the 1980s and 90s from the large increase in working women will not repeat. Structurally, unit expansion will no longer be a growth catalyst. We are likely to see a net reduction in the number of restaurant units over the next five years, a definite paradigm shift.”

Mix and Match fresh meal components are driving the grocerant sector to the forefront of the food retailing. Manufactures, retailers and consumer are all experimenting with this niche. The one thing we understand is that momentum for this niche will continue to build.

Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA is the global leader in the Grocerant niche providing ready-to-eat and ready-to-eat insights, opportunity and information. For more read this article: http://www.anything4restaurants.com/blog/index.php/2009/07/restaurant-consumer-discontinuity-the-consumer-moved-first/

Monday, March 15, 2010

Food / Restaurant Brand Marketing success leaders generally are experienced in CPG.


Building top line sale and bottom line profits is a common goal within the Restaurant industry. Understanding how to build a brand while cultivating consumer is an art reserved for but a few. Recently we have been witness to COPT-CAT marketing within the restaurant industry. Which in turn leads to price wars and location battles, not brand building.

CPG marketers focus on the human interaction with the product and the brand. With the focus on the consumers CPG marketers allow brands to evolve and grow. This creates a bond with consumers ala “co-creating” consumer relevance. That’s where the long term value of the brand begins to grow.

One of the very best in the industry with the skill-set to leverage that knowledge is Broad Street Licensing Group. With A-list client’s, Broad Street Licensing Group is a testament to understanding of the consumer, the marketplace, and value of a restaurant brand. They understand the value of the grocerant niche and it’s roll in the ongoing development of consumer relevant foodservice.

There is no doubt in my mind that one of these days, some smart Private Equity guy is going to make Bill Cross of Broad Street Licensing Group Chief Marketing Officer of his restaurant chain, then watch out! Success does leave clues and Bill Cross and Broad Street Licensing Group are two great clues to success!

Join me here on my blog for insights, information and inspiration. Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Retail Foodservice, what’s under your umbrella? Customers Anyone?


Since 1991 at Foodservice Solutions we believe that Differentiation dose not mean different! It means familiar. Consumers young and old are demanding more choice. Today that means they are looking for choice in different ways, at different times.

Grocery stores, Restaurants, Convenience stores, Dollar Stores, Mobile food trucks and Kiosk are all improving the quality of the food that they sell. The questions is; what is quality? Is it better for you foods, meaning less fat, less salt, fewer calories, or a smaller portion?

Within the grocerant niche we understand the successful role of each in your niche. Packaging, portability and plate presentation contribute significantly to the success of new product or LTO’s. What role does food & food product authenticity play in the relationship to the consumer choice for success?

Consumer want to feel connected to you brand and your brand must remain relevant in the minds eye of the consumer. Outside eyes can deliver both top line growth and bottom line profits for positive results.

Join me here on my blog for insights, information and inspiration. Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Whole Foods finding success beyond category management!


When it comes to finding a path to please consumers, Whole Foods is quite successful at satisfying the appetite of today’s consumer. Understanding the difference between trends and fads is difficult for some. Navigating a brand into the hearts and minds of the consumer for a prolonged period of time takes a skill set few have.

When the Organic /better for you consumer focus began to fade. Whole Foods went beyond category management into consumer focused prepared food meals with interactive participatory grocerant style meal stations scattered about their stores.

Blending a restaurant style Menu Optimizations program (Technomic –industry leading program) with category management Whole Foods is able to build distinctive differentiated food consumables as an entity with identity by day part. This is a technique that Foodservice Solutions recommends when building a grocerant ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat prepared food program in Grocery stores, Convenience stores or Drug stores.

The food value proposition equilibrium for the consumer today balances; better for you, flavor, and traditional products all blended into something with a twist. In industry speak, differentiated does not mean different to the consumer it means familiar. Outside eyes can bring new light and assist in your pace of growth, redevelopment and deployment of your new products. Bridging the gap between retail foodservice and the consumer takes a culled skill-set. Legacy programs like category management must be complemented with a Menu Optimization program and understanding.

Join me here on my blog for insights, information and inspiration. Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant.

Friday, March 12, 2010

Foodservice customers are dynamic not static! Is your brand stuck in the MUD?


If it is true that foodservice consumers are in fact dynamic not static then over time it would be a natural event if your customer moved on! I recently had a discussion with a CEO of a legacy restaurant brand that boasted his brand has not changed and neither has his customers. His company lost money only due to the economic down turn.

However during the past 10 years he has been forced to refinance an ongoing operating loss three different times? Which many banks were willing to do because of his vast real-estate holding’s. Hedge fund managers are scooping up restaurant operators at will and legacy grocery stores are failing at an alarming rate. Might it be time for some change?

Where are the winners? They are the companies that move with the customers; like Whole Foods check out any of there stores between 4:30 PM and 6:30 PM packed at the food stations. They will develop the proper mix to draw the middle of the store back.

Look at Buffalo Wild Wings hardly a start up, but continuing to innovate and build units and customer frequency. Consumer want freshness and some innovation not copy cat marketing or menu items. Like an old couch some times you have to replace it. If you don’t follow the successful attributes of the grocerant niche you should. It’s the only niche growing in every sector of the foodservice industry.

Consumer’s demand authentic menu progression, not static entrenchment. Retail food brands must find a new/fresh way of doing things. That will also provide a new spirit edifying your team creating a synergy to pull your company too contemporary relevance.

Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant. Or visit my blog at:www.grocerants.blogspot.com.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Prepared food for the home is ready-to-eat or ready-to-heat, and building a new niche, the grocerant niche.


Does one go from Deli to grocerant or Grocery Store to grocerant, Restaurant to grocerant, C-store to grocerant or Drug store to grocerant? When the consumer cooks at home more often than not it is a component bundled meal. Delis have been packaging up ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat meals around the country many for over 50 years.  Today prepared ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat  food can be found in each of the of the sectors and is growing rapidly.

Grocery stores on the other hand focused on raw ingredients, struggling with cost of distribution, and fluctuating commodity cost. The consumer does not pay specific attention to either of those cost. What the consumer pays attention to is the end price. The value that the consumer is willing to pay is higher on a prepared meal than raw ingredient.

Recent studies show that the margins are substantially higher on prepped and prepared food. No matter what business your in today, you will be getting into the grocerant business soon enough. The metrics of how it works is difficult for long established companies to overcome. Departmental “rice bowling” will have to end for some legacy companies to succeed in the future. The big picture will be on the end result a happy customer not which department managers wins.

http://www.foodandbeverageunderground.com/grocerants.html

http://www.anything4restaurants.com/blog/index.php/2009/07/restaurant-consumer-discontinuity-the-consumer-moved-first/

Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant. Or visit my blog at:www.grocerants.blogspot.com.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Foodservice Solutions 10 steps to build a solid Grocerant brand position.


Purpose. Why you are there contemporized relevance! The most successful brands are inclusive include values greater than themselves. A lifestyle, a philosophy, an emotion a point in time today that means better for you.

A story. Most major brands have a story. Examples: if you like Ford vehicles, you might be familiar with the story of Henry Ford or if you love your Nikes, you probably know how the Nike swoosh logo was created.

Consumer interaction. When your business is first starting out, don't fool yourself into believing that your marketing efforts are 'brand building' efforts. They're not because to build a real brand, you have to have an extensive track record with consumers. Consumer will build the brand and the story for you.

Trust. When you've consistently delivered for your customers long enough, you'll gain the type of trust that many brands have. Would you buy a Toyoda today? Maybe so, but how long do they have to rebuild that trust?

Consistency. When a consumer chooses a product or service because of brand association, he or she is buying an expectation. Perhaps it's the expectation that the branded product is of higher quality or that the service will be provided in a more efficient manner. The expectation must be met time after time.

Differentiation. Expectation is often borne of differentiation. Many brands offer products and services that are commodities but they're successful in developing some differentiation for their products and services that consumers are sold on.

Imitators. Imitation is the sincerest of flattery and you're probably not a 'brand' until you have competitors trying to copy you. Do what you do best and lead your niche don’t follow.

Market leadership. Top brands are usually looked at as leaders in the markets they compete in. Own the space, and understand why you do.

Grow. The best brands are flexible and capable of reshaping and reinventing themselves and their messages over time. Consumers are not static! Your brand must be dynamic and grow, change and adapt over time.

A strong marketing presence. The information super highway is evolving; your message must follow the traffic. Don’t get stuck on the road less traveled.

Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant. Or visit my blog at:www.grocerants.blogspot.com.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Is this a McDonald’s rouge franchisee or secret menu item? Why should you care?


Success leaves clues and if consumer buzz, increased customer loyalty are important this new Mc Donald's menu item just may be a clue to building top line revenue and bottom line profits. Yesterday on this blog we spoke of chain restaurants with franchisee’s at risk of franchisee discontent and random menu, service and staffing self adjustments. Is this that?

Or is this the hands-on-side of the industry managing a business day to day. With Smashburger positioning to go public, garner additional cash and build new units at and even faster pace; what should McDonalds do?

Pictured above is the The Secret Mc Menu Item That’s Sweeping SF, it is The Mc10:35. Secret menu items can drive top line revenue and bottom line profits while building a loyal brand following of customers who feel that they are “in the know” “special” ala closer to the brand. Let me quote the local report:

“This item the Mc 10:35 secret menu item that can only be ordered during the changeover from breakfast to the standard menu. The Mc10:35 is the unholy but oh-so-hot union between the Mc Double and Egg Mc Muffin. I heard about this from a cashier at one of the local McDonald's. He said it's getting kind of a cult following in San Francisco.”

Now how do you get it?

1. Go to Mc Donald’s right when they are transitioning from breakfast to lunch.

2. Order one of the remaining Egg Mc Muffins from the breakfast menu and also order a Mc Double since the lunch menu is now open.

3. Take the egg and Canadian bacon from the Egg Mc Muffin and put it on the Mc Double.

The guy at the register said people call it a Mc10:35 because that's pretty much the only time you can pull this off. They're damn good.”

In & Out burger is known for it “secret” menu developing success is one thing In & Out does well utilizing the menu, customer and the brand to forge lasting loyal brand followers. Here is a sample from the secret menu:

Animal style is the most popular "secret" style. In addition to the standard toppings, animal style burgers include: pickles, extra spread, extra grilled onions, mustard fried onto each meat patty.

Double-Meat (a.k.a. 2×0) is a Double-Double with no cheese. By definition a Double-Double automatically includes two slices of cheese; for two patties without the cheese, a double meat burger must be ordered.

The Flying Dutchman: Two meat patties, two slices of cheese, no bun. Note: other condiments (including lettuce, tomato, spread, and onions) are not included unless you request them.

Chain Restaurant growth and brand momentum can be stifled by unhappy non compliant Franchisee’s. When profitability slips, and innovation lack luster Franchisee’s on the front lines can contribute greatly to building a better brand. We all remember the Big Mac and the filet-O-fish were developed by Franchisee’s and they have both been around quite a while.

Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA is the global leader in the Grocerant niche providing ready-to-eat and ready-to-eat insights, information and consulting. For more read this article: http://www.anything4restaurants.com/blog/index.php/2009/07/restaurant-consumer-discontinuity-the-consumer-moved-first/

Chain Restaurant growth and brand momentum can be stifled by unhappy non compliant Franchisee’s.


When sales are flat and profits are down chain restaurants with franchisee’s are at risk of franchisee discontent and random menu, service and staffing self adjustments. At present, Burger King’s successful historic rebound momentum could be corralled if franchisee discontent were to grow Inherent in this transition is a state of uneasiness among certain franchisees. Most vulnerable to feelings of trepidation will be small to medium sized franchisee who may feel overlooked. Outside eye’s can provided top line insights and bottom line guidance for long term success.

The ready-to-eat prepared fresh food niche is booming and new avenues of distribution are opening all the time for consumers. Chain restaurant operators must be aware of new competition. Walgreens is positioning to open up 15, 000 new remodeled units with prepared fresh food outlets within the next several years. Safeway continues to remodel units into ‘lifestyle” stores bundled with fresh prepared food. Whole Foods, Central Market and Wegmans are packed from 4:30 -6:30 in the prepared food sections. 7 Eleven is testing new coffee and fresh prepared breakfast items currently.

Yum brands US based franchise are beginning to grumble and Wendy’s may be next. To build value in the franchise it is important to build strength within the organization by edifying the franchise community and its relationship with corporate

Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant. For a fresh food program review or Ombudsman call 253-759-7869 Or visit my blog at:www.grocerants.blogspot.com.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Grocerant food can be “Sous-Vide Cuisine” if quality and volume is key!


Are US restaurants ready to utilize Sous-Vide in fresh prepared grocerant settings? Sous-vide (IPA pronunciation: [su: vi:d]), French for "under vacuum", is a method of cooking that is intended to maintain the integrity of ingredients while capturing the full flavor of the food. Sous-vide cooking uses airtight plastic bags placed in hot water well below boiling point (Usually around 60°C = 140°F) in restaurant settings.

The method was developed by Georges Pralus in the mid-1970s for the Restaurant Troisgros (of Pierre and Michel Troigros) in Roanne, France. He discovered that food cooked in this way kept its original appearance, did not lose its nutrients and maintained its natural texture. The method is used here in the US in a number of top-end restaurants under Thomas Keller, Paul Bocuse, Joel Robuchon and Charlie Trotter and other chefs. Non-professional cooks are also beginning to use vacuum cooking.

Both Culinary Brands and WR Grace entered fresh prepared Sous-vide products at one time during the late 80’s & early 90’s and both sold their operations due to lack of profitability. With the cost of labor on the rise, health care and increasing obstacle it just may be time for resurgence for Sous-vide. Grocerant ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat fresh prepared food is in demand. Note: Sous-vide must be fresh not frozen once frozen it is no longer considered true Sous-vide.

Join me here on my blog for insights, information and inspiration. Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant. Or visit my blog at:www.grocerants.blogspot.com.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

In Fresh Prepared Food, Mix and Match components and portability are required options


As long as multi- generational family’s gather for meals together, the demand for more divergent flavors will continue to permeate. Grocerant style food offerings allow for increased family integration, understanding and acceptance.

Understanding the unique balance between palate, price, pleasure and the consumer’s drive for qualitative distinctive differentiated new food consumables places me in a select industry grouping. The food value proposition equilibrium for the consumer today balances; better for you, flavor, and traditional products all blended into something with a twist.

In industry speak, differentiated does not mean different to the consumer it means familiar. That is where the Grocerant niche falls, it is consumer inspired, component driven and flavor familiar.

Understanding, creating or identifying distinctive differentiated food consumable’s as an entity with identity by day part in an area I excel. Outside eyes can bring new light and assist in your pace of concept growth, redevelopment and deployment of new products. Grocerant specialist can work with you to identify distinctive differentiated food consumables.

Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions has excelled in Marketing all things foodservice related, Culinary menu development & concept development, Training programs and progressive strategic alliances. From sous vide & cook chill to fresh ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat prepared food is building momentum including fresh frozen. Assisting companies and people reach their goals is what we do best. Understanding the role food strategy positioning, and tactics play with outside eyes can provide a platform for success.

Success leaves clues; transformational times require focus and experience with a qualitative edge. Grocerants ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat food, should be the next step in your organizations success.

Join me here on my blog for insights, information and inspiration. Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant.

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Boston Market the one time high flying grocerant niche leader is back in the game!



Eatzi’s brought us interactive participatory fresh prepared food that had the option of portability, led by legendary visionary Phil Romano. It was however Scott Beck who truly understood the power of quality fresh prepared food that propelled the grocerant niche and Boston Market into the A-list of foodservice retailers.

Growing pains and a positioning stumble or two combined with new leadership that did not understand the power of the grocerant niche Boston Market stumbled, lost its way. The new leaderships was great at controlling the cog’s, but lost focus of the true value of the brand and its consumer.

The grocerant niche however continued to grow with companies like Central Market, Whole Foods, Wegmans and Subway entering the fresh prepared better for you space. Wawa and Sheetz ran with fresh prepared food ala the grocerant niche and now lead convenience store sector with 7 Eleven testing fresh prepared food around the globe.

It’s is however Boston Market under the leadership and tutelage of Lane Cardwell that just may retake the retail foodservice grocerant niche chain leadership position once again. They are hitting all of the consumer hot preference options with things like a "flavor bar," where guests can take their food and complement it with six different sauces and salsas for dressing and dipping, as well as flour tortillas for wrapping meals. Yes, they have even for the first time added fried food; OK so we all know that not “better for you”! It is however what the customer wants! What the consumer Buys and what they Eat! They are concurrently promoting small plate special at outstanding price points ($2.99) which will build additional trial.

Success leaves clues we leave plenty here on this blog and it great to see as we describe mix and match meal components driving sales and trial while building loyalty. It’s even more fun the mainstream media picks up of line! Vertical integrated marketing is the one thing that chain restaurants are very good at. If Boston Market continues to read the clues and follow the consumers, they will indeed lead the pack once again!

Join me here on my blog for insights, information and inspiration. Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant.

Friday, March 5, 2010

Walgreens fresh food choice via Duane Reade is perfect!



Retail foodservice will most likely never be the same. Recently Walgreens announced that they were going to acquire New York's largest drug store chain, Duane Reade. During the announcement a focus was placed on the fresh food program of Duane Reade. With the opening of the new Chelsea store, Duane Reade entered the fast pace evolving world of the grocerant niche.

The picture’s above are of first the new Duane Reade in Chelsea and second a current kiosk food offering inside Walgreens. The graphics are much better at Walgreens, while the food offering a game changer at Duane Reade. This is beginning to look like a marriage made in grocerant heaven!

The Chelsea unit featured “a greatly expanded fresh food and grocery offering that includes fresh sandwiches, single-serve entrees, baked goods and freshly packed salads and vegetables” If you can Harkin back to the days of the corner store, because this takes you there albeit in a contemporize format.

“The expanded food section comprises approximately 40% of the 15,000 square foot two-level store and includes delicious soups and easy meal items, such as freshly made and easily microwavable single-serve entrees that customers can take home for a quick and satisfying meal. To complement the entrees, Duane Reade is offering fresh produce for the first time, including bagged salad and packaged celery and carrots, along with freshly packed deli meats. Breakfast items will include fresh-cut fruit, baked goods, as well as self-serve Starbucks coffee.

Food retailers from 7 Eleven, Burger King, Denny’s, McDonalds, Quick Chek, Sheetz, Kroger, Starbucks and Safeway will have to begin to review food offerings. Ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat food is coming too your neighborhood are you ready for a food fight?

Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA is the global leader in the Grocerant niche providing ready-to-eat and ready-to-eat insights, opportunity and information. For more read this article: http://www.anything4restaurants.com/blog/index.php/2009/07/restaurant-consumer-discontinuity-the-consumer-moved-first/

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Will foodservice consumer’s roll, roll, roll into new Northeast 7 Elevens?


App.com reports that “7-Eleven Inc. plans to open 200 stores in New Jersey, this year and next year,” That is the good news for retail consumers. However, just how good is it going to be 7 Eleven? They will now enter one of the strongest retail foodservice markets in the country and compete with the best; both Wawa and Sheetz. This is one area of the country that the roller grill will have to roll away!

Retail foodservice consumers in the Northeast are a custom too high quality fresh prepared food that is portable and consumer participatory. 7 Eleven is testing fresh egg and pancakes for breakfast, fresh prepared sandwiches’ and a new up tempo coffee options at various locations around the globe. If they don’t open with a strong hand in food, they will be relegated an also ran by the consumer for years to come.

Retail consultant and managing director of Strategic Resources, Burt Flickinger recently stated “consumers between the ages of 14 and 35 will go to convenience stores three or more times a week as compared with a weekly supermarket trip.” Which is one reason that Wawa and Sheetz continue to do well in foodservice compared to many northeast regional grocery store operators.

Interestingly 7 Eleven is much better suited to open additional stores in the South and Southeast were going head on with Racetrac and Quick Trip would seem more logical. Given that both of those chains have notably much weaker foodservice offerings. Either 7 Eleven has a very good realtor in the northeast or they are ready to roll out their new foodservice program soon. Which do you think it is?

http://www.foodservice.com/articles/show.cfm?contentid=5512&title=Roll, Roll, Roll, Away Roller Grill!

Join me here on my blog for insights, information and inspiration. Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

In Retail Foodservice bold leadership is better than incremental management.


The pizza industry enjoyed unbounded success for years with each company known for its differentiated specialty! The differentiation ranged from 30 minute delivery times, to stuffed crust or pan pizza, online ordering or low price leader with regional players focusing on the community. Most were leveraging one and sometimes two attributes with limited success and year after year capitulating marketshare. None seemed to focus on the customer, how they were changing, core menu items or new players like Papa Murphy’s Take & Bake Pizza.

The price of cheese spiked, the consumer pulled back and one man stepped up to the challenge! David A. Brandon, Domino's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. The choice was clear; look at the big picture, address the over all problems and move forward or sit back and tweak things until the economy turns around. He took the first choice and the industry should be proud he did!

Recently he stated: "The bold steps we have been taking to re-ignite our domestic system helped us gain significant traction last year. We succeeded in our primary goal of growing traffic all four quarters of 2009. Traffic growth was the most significant in the fourth quarter; and this positive momentum has continued thus far in 2010, as sales and traffic have increased significantly since the launch of our new core pizza."

One time niche industry leader Pizza Hut can only counter with price point cuts. Industry managers who believe that during times of change incremental tweaks will provide long term positive results may be right. Only however if they think franchisee calling HQ demanding change is a good thing!

Rationalization and justification will not satisfy investors in today’s world. Strategy must replace reactionary tactics if long term success if the goal! Success does leave clues Papa Murphy’s and Domino’s read the clues better than many others.

Foodservice Solutions the global leader in the grocerant niche! Grocerant program assessments and brand or product positioning assistance available at Foodservice Solutions, Tacoma WA or leave a comment. http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant

http://www.foodservice.com/articles/show.cfm?contentid=4112&title=Restaurant Consumer Discontinuity

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Fresh & Easy is consumer empowering, enabling and on a roll.


Fresh & Easy is becoming what Eatzi’s and Boston Market both wanted to become. That is the consumer’s first choice for ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat Grocerant food. The latter two both got stuck in a quagmire of their own creation and lost sight / focus of the customer. The both relented to metrics defined by Wall Street or industry niche and tried please the street with non relevant metrics.

Now burden with the “Dallas foodservice leadership syndrome” a malaise of miss-guided tactics will not allow them to keep pace with solid consumer focused success steps seen from Tesco’s Fresh & Easy. Fresh & Easy. Focused on “low price, fresh ingredients” both of which resonate with the consumer. Fresh & Easy has opened 8 units in 2010 and is well on it’s way to 150 units.

Key to the success of Fresh & Easy is packaging size, meal components, many more ready-to-cook flavored meats, branded bread from il Fornaio and a blend of quality private label products. Including Cranberry Blue Pecan Salad, Mango Chicken & Rice, Shrimp Alfredo all complement F&E’s menu.

Tesco is a British company not burden with the copy cat mentality that seems to be over flowing in the US foodservice sector for the past 6 years. I think that Fresh & Easy with a consumer centric focus will not only do well but very well may lead a blended niche for years to come. The Grocerant niche is on the move. Program niche assessments include the Grocery, Convenience store, Restaurant, Supermarket sectors along with niche new comers.

Join me here on my blog for insights, information and inspiration. Since 1991 Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA has been the global leader in the Grocerant niche for more on Steven A. Johnson and Foodservice Solutions visit http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Grocerants create happy meal times, by expanding the melting pot!


Alice May Brock said: Tomatoes and oregano make it Italian, wine and tarragon make it French, sour cream makes it Russian, lemon and cinnamon make it Greek, soy sauce makes it Chinese, garlic makes it good.

I say: grocerant meal components bundled and portable make a family meal, a happy meal!

Grocerants allow customers to select from Italian, French, Russian or Greek and utilize the components at home any way they like. The new American meal can be a composite of any prepared food components that the individual may want and they can mix and pair them any way as well. Our society is a composed for people from all over the world, with different cultures, traditions and flavor preferences. The new American meal is a melting pot of flavor and choice.

Prepared ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat foods are now available for all comers and can be found at Convenience stores, Grocery stores, Restaurants, Mobile trucks all just waiting for the taking.

Consumers have been exposed to a plethora of flavors and have not the time to master the skill of cooking each. This growing trend is empowering the consumer to establish new customs and traditions in eating better, more flavorful food. The Grocerant niche is about convenient meal participation, differentiation and individualization.

Success leaves clues: Foodservice Solutions in Tacoma, WA has been gathering them just for you! For a Grocerant program opportunity assessment contact Steve Johnson of Foodservice Solutions or leave a comment.

Foodservice Solutions of Tacoma, WA is the global leader in the Grocerant niche. More about us: http://www.linkedin.com/in/grocerant or leave a comment or question below. If you would like to read the latest interview of Steve Johnson on Grocerants here is the link: an interview of Steven Johnson at: www.goodfoodsales.blogspot.com/2009/12/grocerants-steven-johnson-shares-his.html