The bad news?
The last few years have taken a tremendous toll on the foodservice industry. While onsite foodservice companies were less affected than commercial restaurants, reduced consumer spending has forced institutions to reduce labor and operating costs.
The good news?
Foodservice operators across the country are optimistic about the near future. Industry expert Darren Tristano, executive vice president of the Technomic forecasting firm, expects modest real growth beyond inflation in 2012. In the onsite sector, Technomic predicts that growth will be led by foodservice in hospitals, colleges, senior living and K-12 schools:
Other foodservice trend drivers include:
- Food price inflation will become more predictable. Although prices will likely increase 3 to 4 percent in 2012, some of last year’s volatility will moderate.
- Commodity prices will likely decline in the beef, dairy, coffee and cereal/bakery categories.
- Increases in labor costs will continue to be problematic, as recent actions by the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) may make it easier for unions to organize and structure bargaining units.
- Food trends remain on the same course. The latest NRA/ACF “What’s Hot” survey of chefs predicts a continuing emphasis on locally-produced, sustainable foods, international street food, small plate grazing and nutrition-inspired trends.
These trends all point to a widespread, if cautious, optimism that onsite foodservice business will be noticeably improved for the remainder of 2012.
Penguin Staff provides comprehensive hospitality workforce solutions to help you effectively manage labor costs, simplify administration and capitalize on the industry upturn. Serving Atlanta, Central Virginia and the DC/Baltimore Metro region, Penguin delivers the most highly-qualified and trained professionals for your hospitality positions.