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Five ways to maximise meal deal offerings in foodservice

With no signs of slowing down, the food-to-go market is set to grow by £2.1 billion by 2026 , and while convenience has been the key beneficiary of the food-to-go revival, foodservice is gaining traction.

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Soft drink sales within foodservice surged by 46% in 2023 versus 2022, with a value of £7.6 billion[1], as a result of more people on-the-go. With no signs of slowing down, the food-to-go market is set to grow by £2.1 billion by 2026[2], and while convenience has been the key beneficiary of the food-to-go revival, foodservice is gaining traction.

 

However, as consumers continue to curb their spending, operators are having to adapt to more cost-conscious consumers. Meal deals, for example, allow foodservice operators to encourage diners to buy more items per visit and increase average spend, while helping customers feel like they are getting value for money[3]. Clearly there’s huge value in offering competitive meal deals in the current climate, and many operators have launched meal deals straight out of grocery multiples’ playbook. So, what can you do to maximise your meal deal offerings this year?

Offering affordable meal deals

The foodservice industry is remaining competitive by pricing meal deals on par with or even cheaper than convenience or grocery stores. In the long run, offering affordable meal deals will encourage customer loyalty and retention.

 

You should consider allowing customers to ‘mix and match’ their choice from various sandwiches, soft drinks and snacks, giving them the option to choose from items that suit their budget and taste. 

Pair soft drinks with snacks to expand the opportunity

Meal deals are often thought of as a lunchtime occasion however, plenty of consumers will pop into an outlet to grab a soft drink or a snack at various points of the day. Creating deals that include both soft drinks and snacks is a simple way to increase how much customers spend and a great way to expand the opportunity beyond lunchtime. Consider pairing 7UP Zero Sugar or Pepsi MAX® with crisps, nuts or baked goods to help raise average spend throughout the day.

Earlier this month, Britvic announced that Pepsi MAX® will be undergoing a complete rebrand, with exciting new pack designs for all formats. The roll-out will be supported by a fully integrated campaign, including TV, radio, out-of-home and experiential marketing.  Visibility will therefore be high for Pepsi MAX® and front of mind for consumers when deciding which soft drink to pick.

Cater to health-conscious consumers

Health continues to remain an important consideration for consumers when out and about. In fact, for 45%[4] of people, added health benefits are the most important quality in food and drink. Therefore, it is important to offer deals and pairings that cater to this demand.

Linking fruit, nuts and other snacks with health-focused drinks such as Aqua Libra, Purdey’s and Plenish is a great way to tap into this trend. Recently, Aqua Libra broadened its portfolio with a duo of plain still and sparkling water cans which are now available in hospitality and perfect as a healthier option. Plenish also recently expanded its range of juice shots with the launch of a new Spirulina Detox Shot, a new addition to their range of juice shots.

Family appeal

Offering meal deals aimed at families is a great way to boost sales and increase customer loyalty. Parents appreciate the convenience and bundled options for the whole family.

Consider offering kids’ meal deals that combine sandwiches and snacks, with a Fruit Shoot, available in four core range flavours – Apple and Blackcurrant, Orange, Summer Fruits and Apple.

Excite with limited-edition flavours

Limited-edition flavours are a great way to generate excitement and change things up for your customers. Operators should offer various limited-edition flavours in meal deals to attract customers to spend on these deals.

Britvic offers innovative flavours such as Tango Editions, a rotational flavour serious, with the latest being Tango Mango launching in February. Succeeding Tango’s popular Paradise Punch flavour, this latest rotation is set to meet the demand for Mango flavoured drinks, giving shoppers more sugar-free drink options without having to compromise on taste.

Britvic also has a constant pipeline of new products including Pepsi MAX® Mango which launched last summer. The new flavour innovation joined Cherry and Lime in the fruit-flavoured line-up and rolled out in a variety of different formats to help operators cater to various consumer needs.

[1] CGA, FS&L, MAT to 31.12.22

[2] Lumina, Food to Go report, Feb 2023

[3] IGD, UK Quick Service Restaurant (QSR) Sector, November 2022

[4] Mintel: Recession and the cost-of-living crisis: Key challenges and opportunities for brands in the UK January 2023