Foodservice Industry Week in Brief: March 9
Looking for some of the week’s top information? Here are five stories from the foodservice industry for March 5-9.
The Dollar Menu and Happy Meals, both staples to McDonald’s menu, will undergo some changes. The Huffington Post highlighted what will be different with the Dollar Menu–which will replace the small beverage and fries with baked cookies and ice cream cones. A new “Extra Value” menu will roll-out and will feature items such as double cheeseburgers, snack wraps, chicken nuggets, etc. between $1-$2. NRN followed up on the improved Happy Meal and spoke with McDonald’s Chief Marketing Officer, Niel Golden about advertising. Golden said all marketing to children will all have messages to encourage an active and healthy lifestyle. The new Happy Meal will include smaller portions of chicken nuggets and french fries along with apple slices and fat-free milk. Read full articles from the Huffington Post and NRN.
Panda Express to Test New 3-Entree, Eco-Friendly Container
From National Restaurant Association, Read Article
Normally when customers visit the Chinese restaurant Panda Express, they’re used to ordering a la cart, the one-entree Panda Bowl or a two-entree plate with an entree and side item of their choice. A recent Nation’s Restaurant News’ article discussed something new for Panda Express, a test of a container called the “Paw Plate.” It has three compartments for the entrees and one area for the side dish. NRN said this new container is more environmentally friendly and is also recyclable, microwaveable and dishwasher safe. Read the full story and see a picture of the new “Paw Plate” on the NRN website.
Local Food at Airports
From QSR Magazine, Read Article
Awhile back we learned how many airport foodservices were revamping their menus and providing more gourmet items. Now, many airport foodservices are taking it a step further and are providing more local items to showcase what a particular city has to offer. QSR covered the topic and discussed how previously there was a focus on national brands but now local will be playing a role too. Read full article on QSR website.
It seems as though the topic of “Pink Slime” meat being served in schools couldn’t be avoided this week as it’s been all over Facebook, Twitter, blogs and the news. What is “pink slime?” According to an MSNBC article, “pink slime is bits of meat and muscle salvaged from slaughterhouse floors that are treated with a pink chemical to kill any dangerous pathogens.” Restaurants such as McDonald’s will no longer serve this type of meet to customers, yet it’s still being served in schools. Also, ABC News spoke with a former USDA scientist that said 70 percent of ground beef at supermarkets consists of “pink slime” as well. Read full articles on the MSNBC website and on ABC News.
Facebook Timeline for Brands by March 30
If your restaurant or foodservice has a fan page on Facebook, come March 30, it will change to the new Facebook Timeline. Yes, change is scary, but the new Timeline really offers a ton of great features and advantages.
You will be able to showcase your establishment with the large photo cover, brief “about us” statement, different page apps (formally were the “tabs” you could have on the left such as maps, photos, etc.), pinned posts to make important messages appear first and the ability to add milestone events. The new Facebook Timeline can really help you humanize your business and really show it off. There are several other new features to be taken advantage of, here are a few links that you will find helpful in making the switch. Remember, you have until March 30!
- TechCrunch: How To Use Facebook Timeline for Brand Pages: New Feature Details
- SmartBlog on Social Media: Facebook Timeline: How to Cope with Changes to the Default Landing Tab
- Duct Tape Marketing: 5 Tricks that Every Marketer Needs to Know to Exploit the New Facebook Page Design
- All Facebook: Facebook Releases Guide to Facebook Offers