United by food - Macphie

Many of us have lived our lives in isolation over the last two years. Cut off from family, loved ones, and friends. In a world where so much has changed, is changing, people are looking for a root to cling to, something to help them feel connected once again. As the world reopens, the kitchen opens up a world of possibilities and moments of togetherness through the power of food.

While operators continue to face a variety of challenges, the demand to eat out is on the up. The UK eating out market is expected to grow +33.4%, to £63.6billion, ahead of a full recovery this year, when it’s set to hit £91.9billion (Lumina Intelligence, eating out market report, 2021).

So what will an unrestricted year ahead look like for the eating out market?

Best of British

A spirit of comradery and pulling together as a community has very much come to the fore across our nation. And with the Platinum Jubilee coming up, the people of Britain will be gathering again to celebrate what it means to be British.

Consumers will be on the lookout for cakes, bakes and snacks to keep the celebrations going, seeking out some of the most iconic, and best-loved British foods.  Expect to see afternoon tea, classic cakes and traditional pub grub prove popular this summer.

Al fresco dining

As the sun visits our skies more often over the coming months, we’ll all be making up for lost time in the great outdoors and soaking up the best of the British summer. And that means enjoying a lot of great grub outdoors too!

Throughout the pandemic, operators invested in outdoor seating and are starting to see long-term payback with consumers preferring to dine al fresco over the summer.

Social sharing

Dining with friends has been a challenge over the last few years, but that doesn’t mean we’ve not kept sharing our food … through social media!

Over 30% of us have been posting food and table pictures on social media more than in previous years and 27% of 18-24 years-olds post food pictures daily (Waitrose Food & Drink Report, 2022).

Customers continue to seek out camera-friendly cuisine and photo-ready fare that they can’t help but share on their social feeds so make sure you have bright and bold dishes on your menu and put your business in the picture.

Sides matter

This year will see the return of impromptu catch-ups and drinks after work. This will see an increase in customers ordering sharing dishes or multiple side dishes to pick away at while putting the world to right.

Sides are a great way to keep your menu fresh as well as upsell so don’t push them to the side. We have a range of easy, on-trend recipe ideas using our ready-to-use savoury sauces.

So whether it’s a bank holiday hurrah or afternoon tea to toast the Queen, food will be at the centre of all our celebrations this year. Check out our recipe suggestions and make sure you and your customers make up for lost time. And keep an eye on our social channels over the coming weeks as we provide tips and tricks to tap into the trends this summer. You’ll find us on Facebook, LinkedIn, Instagram and Twitter.