The findings, contained in a new report CGA Food Insights, reveal that average spend on food and drink outside the home in the UK is highest when consumers are on a date – at £22.50 per head – while nearly a third of those who go out to eat on a date say they do so on a weekly basis.
“Informed operators are now thinking about the reasons diners are visiting them” commented Fiona Speakman, CGA’s Food Client Director, “whether it be a date, celebration or a quick bite to eat and providing meals for these occasions such as sharing platters, light main meals or smaller plates which can really maximise sales.”
The CGA Food Insights report details consumer attitudes to new and emerging food trends, ethical issues when dining out and diners’ attitudes to health considerations such as sustainability and ethically-sourced food.
It reveals the extent to which the British consumer now eats out – with 57% drinking outside the home at least once a week and 43% eating out at least weekly – and the fact that 56% of consumers say that it’s important to them to be able to try new food trends when they dine out.
“Our research highlights consumer trends in eating out and areas of opportunity for operators,” added Fiona Speakman, “For example average spend per visit in the workplace is the lowest but has one of the highest visit frequencies – an important consideration when location planning.”
The report finds 61% of consumers tempted by on-the-go snack purchasing at least once a week, spending an average of £3.75 on this, making it another growth area of opportunity.
Likewise the report reveals the popularity of late-night snacks, with over half (52%) of consumers buying a late snack on a weekly basis and spending an average of £6.20 when they do.
Nearly half of respondents (47%) go out for breakfast at least once a week, spending an average of £8.75, thus demonstrating the opportunities that exist for operators at various times of the day.
“We’ve seen a rise in eating out on less traditional occasions such as breakfast and brunch but late-night snacking and on-the-go snacking have now become the most frequent reasons to eat out which highlights the evolving nature of the out-of-home market,” she concluded.
CGA’s Food Insights report is available to purchase now at https://www.cga.co.uk/food-insights-report-2019/