For some consumers, buying a whole pie or case of cookies doesn’t seem practical. Many are looking to enjoy a small treat that can be taken with them to the office or delivered to them at home. Creating a convenient way for people to enjoy desserts is increasingly important for food service suppliers looking to gain an edge and stay competitive.
According to Mintel, c-stores and quick-service restaurants are recognizing the need for desserts that can be swiftly ordered, easily prepared and carried out. By creating desserts that cater to this sentiment, bakery products can appeal to food service operators and their on-the-go customers. Third-party delivery services also are putting pressure on restaurants and bakeries to create portable products as consumers become more reliant on companies such as GrubHub and UberEats.
“We’re seeing the omnichannel phenomenon in the industry right now, where consumers want interesting food solutions everywhere they go, and that certainly extends to bakery,” said Lauren Lopez, director of marketing, fully finished desserts, Rich Products. “This blurring of the channels creates an opportunity to expand the range of product offerings and solutions in a variety of places to meet consumer demand.”
Our Specialty, a Rich’s brand, leverages the growing trend of convenience and portability with its Dessert Dippers. Comparable to other combo-kits that contain snacks such as hummus with pretzels or vegetables with dressing, Dessert Dippers include cookies that can be dipped in icing. The product aligns well with other fast casual or in-store offerings that require little to no prep and can be enjoyed in variety of settings.
When Bistro Collection, which recently was acquired by private equity firm Kohlberg & Co. from Tyson Foods’ frozen bakery business, developed its gourmet line of stuffed muffins, it wanted to make snacking on-the-go easier and wrapped the item in a large peel-back liner that can catch crumbs. This packaging solution created a trouble-free way to transport the product without making a mess.
“We keep seeing trends toward to-go, carry out and delivery, so getting things into more portable containers is important,” said Janee Luhrsen, category marketing manager, Tyson Foods.
As desserts are eaten at any daypart, creating products that provide degrees of convenience is vital. Using new packaging formats is a simple way to make desserts more attractive to food service operations and consumers.