Q&A: Front Burner Contestants On The Future Of Foodservice

Specialty Food Association
Each Fancy Food Show, SFA hosts the Front Burner Foodservice Pitch Competition, where three finalists pitch their products in front of a live audience and select foodservice judges. You can read more about the Winter Show competition and winner here. We also asked each finalist to weigh in on the future of the foodservice industry. Here is some of what they had to say. (This interview originally ran in the Winter Fancy Food Show Daily. You can view full editions of all three Show Dailies here.)

Q: What will have the biggest impact on foodservice in 2020? 

There will be a larger shift to natural and organic options in 2020 and beyond. Many millennials and Gen Z consumers are becoming more aware of what they put into their bodies and this will force the industry to make food that is good for consumers as well as tasty. As vegan options continue to grow in retail, I expect them to grow in foodservice as well, along with CBD. Fast casual food is another category that I expect tremendous growth out of, making premium fine dining an expectation of the past. 
Dinesh Tadepalli, Incredible

There will be a continuation of change in the cultural landscape of America, with major influences coming from traditional Asian and Hispanic flavors. In addition, there will be continued growth of specialty burgers and pizza. Fast casual will become better and accessibility will be a differentiator. We will also see more sustainable to-go packaging.
Bob Trently, Savencia Cheese

Online ordering and delivery. As digital disruption continues, brands must embrace technology or be left in the dust. Consumers want great food and great service, and now there is an added convenience of ordering it online and having it delivered to their door. Convenience and speed will lead in this decade. My advice is to adapt to this quickly-evolving model of foodservice and continue to monitor it as the current disruptors will get disrupted and the overall game will continue to change. Consumers will additionally continue to value companies who care about them and aspire to do good things. 
Christine Lantinen, Maud Borup

Posted by Denise Purcell on Mar 10, 2020 11:30 AM America/New_York