The foodservice industry must be adaptable and responsive to consumer trends to keep their customers happy. In addition to being energy efficient and keeping foods safe, the commercial refrigerators you use at your foodservice business should benefit the wants and needs of the consumer’s experience.
Here are three consumer trends that are shaping the future of the food service industry — from restaurants to supermarkets, convenience stores, and micro-markets — and how they impact your commercial refrigeration needs.
On-the-Go Food Options
As consumers are increasingly busy and on-the-go, they’re on the lookout for convenient foodservice options over sit-down restaurants. Unattended micro-market locations are growing in popularity, because shoppers can get what they need quickly, paying on an automated honor system instead of interacting with an employee.
Micro-markets often function with minimal retail space, so they need commercial refrigeration systems that can attractively display food items with limited space, such as countertop refrigerators. Since these locations are unattended, their commercial refrigerators should have automatic locking mechanisms in the event of unsafe internal temperatures. This will ensure that no one eats potentially spoiled food in the event of a power outage, or even something as simple as a shopper accidentally leaving the refrigerator open after selecting their item.
Health-Conscious Food Choices
The push to organic, fresh, and health-conscious food choices is still holding strong, influencing how supermarkets and other food retailers should market their perishable foods. Since the customer’s gaze falls to what’s on eye-level first, use that space in your commercial refrigerator to promote a selection of colorful products, a specialty item, or premium brand.
Stainless steel commercial refrigerators repel bacteria, helping you keep your cold inventory fresh longer. Refrigerators with LED lighting create eye-catching displays of health-conscious food selections, driving consumer’s buying habits.
Wholesome Meals for Busy Families
Consumers today are torn between an ever-packed schedule and the desire to prepare healthy meals at home. While micro-markets are responding to this need with pre-packaged prepared food choices, other food retailers can respond to the need for convenient food options to take home, rather than eat on-the-go.
Open-air coolers at the front of the food retail store can be used to hold bundled food selections with a corresponding recipe, saving shoppers the time it would take to go through the store and find the individual ingredients.
The Future of Commercial Refrigerators
It’s not enough that your commercial refrigerators keep food safe — they must also display your inventory in a way the encourages consumers to purchase. Look for ones with a streamlined design that maximizes interior display space. Automatic locking mechanisms will keep food in unattended locations safe from spoilage, protecting your bottom line and the consumer’s safety. Imbera Foodservice has a complete line of commercial refrigerators designed to meet the needs of supermarkets, micro-markets, and other foodservice locations. To learn about Imbera’s full line of commercial refrigerators, including countertop and open-air models, contact us today at 678-504-6842.