The type of food we consume has become a bigger focus in many people’s lives, in an effort to get healthy or feel better after a meal. For many, their food allergies determine what they can and can’t consume.
If you think about the people in your zone of influence, there will be at least one who requires a gluten-free diet, another who is diabetic and yet another who has chosen to go vegan. Whatever the reasons for a person’s diet, they should be respected, and what better way to respect it than to offer food that caters to these specific requirements? If you run a food establishment, catering to those with food allergies and specific diets can open your business to an untapped market. Here are some reasons why you should consider having a few meals to cater for those that require a specific diet.
A menu that indicates if food is gluten-free, vegan or vegetarian, gives patrons a choice. It shows that you care for those that do have a food allergy or are following a specific diet for their health. Offering a range of dishes for many of the main food intolerances and diets shows you are willing to go the extra mile to ensure all patrons dietary requirements are not only met but are also accepted. One establishment that has shown they care is Bakers Delight. They now offer a FODMAP friendly loaf for those that find it hard to digest bread.
Eating out has become an enjoyable social event for many because food brings family and friends together. Finding a restaurant that caters to everyone’s food needs can be tricky. If your food establishment offers a varied menu, you can guarantee word-of-mouth will get larger group bookings because it takes away the stress of requesting special dishes.
Health is something that restaurants forget. Often, patrons come to visit to get a food experience. If they notice a specific dish is paleo or vegan, they may be tempted to try it to find out what the buzz is all about. Offering dishes that cater to food diets opens up food possibilities for the patron. It could also be the catalyst for someone to choose healthier options.
This relates to point 2, but for those that do have food allergies, it can be challenging to find a food service that can cater to their needs or change a dish, so it is suitable. Nut allergies, dairy allergies, egg allergies, gluten allergies and seafood allergies are some of the common food allergies. Offering a select few dishes that cater to these will mean you will open yourself up to a new market. It’s common for many people who suffer a food allergy to eat at home. Eating out is stressful because few restaurants cater to their needs, eating at home is easier.
Research has shown that food intolerances have risen; food establishments need to take note and adapt their menus if they want to reach out to this untapped market.
Experience and fulfilment are the main reasons people eat out. They want a foodie experience, and they want to leave a restaurant feeling satisfied, knowing they haven’t compromised their diet or need to use an EpiPen to reverse the symptoms of an allergic reaction.