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08/02/2016 Blog by Conceptional

Food & Beverage trends for 2016 – part 2

This week, another 6 team members of Conceptional share their Food & Beverage trend for 2016 with you. We will tell you about fast casual concepts, young food & beverage entrepreneurs, the balance between data and intuition, food delivery, the use of videos and blurring!

Fast casual

Fast casual is the fastest growing segment in the foodservice market in the USA. Their sales have grown by 600 percent over the past 14 years. In Europe this is 15 percent over the past 5 years. Fast casual restaurants are based on a quick service restaurant format, so that a high speed of service can be guaranteed. The food and beverage is ordered at the counter, just like in quick service restaurants, however, the food in fast casual restaurants is made to order instead of in advance. This allows the customer to customize their order to their own taste. Fast casual concepts also include elements of full service casual dining restaurants, especially in terms of atmosphere and look & feel. However, fast casual restaurants distinguish themselves by the urban look & feel

But what makes the fast casual restaurants so unique? This lies mainly in the use of real, fresh products, professional preparation, attractive presentation, an accessible and attractive look & feel and the personal approach of the staff. Also the use of technology is typical for fast casual restaurants, like for example (mobile) ordering systems and digital menu boards. Social media also plays an important part in these restaurants. It is one of their most important marketing tools. This is one of the reasons that their most important target group is the Millennials. They value high speed of service and good quality products. In addition, they make extensive use of social media.

The creation of several formats within a fast casual concept offers the entrepreneur the flexibility to build up the concept from different modules, in which the quality of the product can be maintained. This is beneficial for the entrepreneurs, as the investment to establish the concept is often lower this way.

Examples of fast casual concepts are Chipotle, Smashburger and Freshii.

Food Delivery

Consumers will receive access to the biggest virtual drive-through ever, and they don’t even have to leave the house! Online and mobile food and grocery ordering is going to be a big trend in 2016. It will be the ultimate convenience for the consumer! You look for a restaurant with an app, order and pay, without any human interaction. New in the market of food delivery are Google, uberEats and Amazon. They don’t have anything to do with food, but connect the consumer with the restaurant or deliver your groceries from your favorite supermarket. Two-star-restaurant &samhoud places delivers their street food in Amsterdam through the bike delivery service Foodora. Foodora also delivers your favorite dishes at home in The Hague and Utrecht. However, online en mobile delivery are also a threat to restaurants.  More and more restaurants and brands embrace the fact that food delivery will become part of their services in the future. Thus, for example, Chipotle wants to create a second production line, so they can use it to boost the number of deliveries.


Blurring, remains an important foodservice trend in 2016. The goal is to create a ‘hybrid food experience” by combining and fusing various food products and formats. A new phenomenon in blurring is Eatail, a combination of retail, hospitality and leisure. The goal is to create an experience, optimize the number of square meters, and maximize profits and income. One of the sectors that recognizes the value of food & beverage concepts is the real estate sector. The increase in the demand for food & beverage concepts from the real estate sector is mainly due to the attraction and the expected increase in sales of retail products if a combination is made with food & beverage. In addition, real estate companies want to create an experience for the guest, in which food & beverage concepts fit perfectly. The combination of hospitality and retail is mainly trending internationally, but is also increasingly emerging in the Netherlands. An example of the blurring trend is the transformation of the traditional food courts to food markets. Examples include the Markthal or the Fenix Food Hall in Rotterdam and the Foodhallen in Amsterdam. International examples are Gansevoort Market and Eataly in New York City and Borough Market in London.


During the development of a Food & Beverage concept, Conceptional keeps in mind the latest trends and developments in the foodservice industry.


Do you have any questions regarding this blog or are you interested in Conceptional’s projects? Feel free to contact us.

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