We've been using condiments forever. From the far reaches of Asia to ancient Rome, from fish sauce to tartar sauce, we've come a long way in not just the condiments we use, but also in how they're dispensed.
Over time, our tastes have changed and morphed from region to region, century to century. There's linguistic evidence that ketchup actually began in Asia in its original form. There's data that shows the rise in more ethnic sauces like chimichurri and Sriracha. And in foodservice operations across New England, there's been a rise in interesting condiment offerings that wouldn't be recognizable thirty years ago.
What are the current trends?
Every restaurant offers its own set of condiments. Spicy and savory flavors that used to be found exclusively at food trucks or ethnic restaurants have made their way into everyday establishments.
According to some of the data from condiment producers, 40% of all consumers now have signature sauces in mind when they go out to eat. Take one of the largest burger chains in the world, for example. When the release of a popular Szechuan Sauce created an overwhelming demand, they had to ship 20 million packets in preparation for the second round of its release.
What about Sriracha? This global favorite hot sauce sells more than $20 million in bottles a year and earned more than $85 million in 2013. Despite this, none of sriracha's success came from paid marketing. It all happened via word of mouth.
These trends are largely driven by demographics, particularly, Millennials. As a generation, they have refined tastes that appreciate everything that sauces and condiments represent: bold flavors that are often ethnically driven, which eventually become part of our everyday culinary vernacular. Especially if those brands are cheap.
How can you give the masses what they want?
Most condiments offered by restaurants, particularly in fast casual and quick serve restaurants, come in little sauce packets. This is actually one of the worst ways to dispense your condiments. Especially if you're targeting Millennials, who appreciate and prefer operations with a more sustainable stance.
Dispensing into an earth friendly / compostable cup can be portion controlled with these from Server Products.
Server Products also offers ProPortion Handheld Dispensers that allow for accurate ways to dispense condiments into your sandwiches in the back of the house. Creating the same flavor profile every time you build a sandwich is extremely important for repeat business and tracking nutritional information.
We encourage you to get in touch with us to go through the numbers and learn more about the savings behind pouches versus packets.
Not only will you become a more sustainable restaurant, you'll also experience greater profits by lowering your food expenses. As for your customers, no more ketchup fingers or chipped teeth from trying to bite open another packet of mayo.