To launch this year’s festive range foodservice provider Bidfood is shining a light not only on consumer demands shaping 2023, but on the year long process to bring us all a Christmas to remember.
The festive season doesn’t just start and stop on the 12 day lead up to Christmas. In fact, for the foodservice industry, the preparations begin almost immediately after the celebrations end, making it a year long process. From fresh suppliers to growers and producers, Christmas truly is a 12-month-long team effort.
To support Bidfood in developing this year’s festive range, the wholesaler commissioned research to find out how consumer behaviours would be driving decision making when eating and drinking out of home this Christmas.
Cost of living
Despite another challenging year due to the cost of living crisis, the good news is that 44% of consumers plan to go out for food and drink at least once a week this year. In fact, with 1 in 3 stating that food and drink is typically their main way of socialising and catching up with loved ones this season, tapping into this will be essential.
Unsurprisingly, value for money is once again going to be a top priority for consumers when deciding where to eat out this year, with 57% of people labelling cost as the biggest factor. However there can’t be a compromise on quality, as almost half (47%), say this is also high on their priority list when decision making. To help operators balance the two, Bidfood has developed dishes that provide a sense of luxury without breaking the bank. A slow-cooked short rib of beef with rich French onion gravy lends itself perfectly to this. Or for a sweet treat, a twist on the cult classic, sticky toffee Christmas pudding drizzled with toffee sauce.
As well as value for money, consumers want to see choice on the menu. With this in mind, operators would benefit from having a range of non-festive options to accompany the more traditional dishes. Bidfood’s range has incorporated a variety of ‘winter warmers’, such as a hearty slow cooked lamb and root vegetable stew.
Operators should be cautious to not discard meat-free options this Christmas. Although many associate this time of year with turkey, pigs in blanket and ham, a quarter of people would find a non-meat dish appealing. And this stretches far further than just vegetarians and vegans, sustainability and health conscious consumers have contributed to the meat reduction trend making it important for operators to provide a strong meat-free offering across their menus. Bidfood’s range taps into this trend with a number of vegan and vegetarian options, such as the wild mushroom & confit onion tartlet, butternut squash, lentil, spinach & almond wellington and the sweet and creamy lemon berry delice.
Vicky Tripp, Campaign & Brand Manager at Bidfood commented:
“It’s great to be able to raise awareness of, and showcase, the hard work that goes into Christmas every year to make it the success that it is. Making sure everything is ready for December truly is a team effort industry wide.
“With over 70 new products across a number of categories ranging from meat-free and seafood, luxury and indulgence to on the go items, there really is something for everyone in our range. And once again we’re partnering with FareShare via Work for Good.
“With a variety of products, both old and new, the Bidfood 2023 range aims to assist operators with their Christmas menu development plans as well as offering great food to consumers as we head into the winter months.”