Foodservice Equipment & Supplies

NOV 2018

Foodservice Equipment & Supplies magazines is an industry resource connecting foodservice operators, equipment and supplies manufacturers and dealers, and facility design consultants.

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F rom an outdoor barbecue to an elaborate hotel wed- ding, on- and o-premise catering is diverse in nature. Consequently, menus and the supporting equipment need to be all things to all customers. Despite the many challenges, this is one segment that shows no signs of slowing down. According to Los Angeles-based market research firm IBISWorld, cater- ing as a whole is a $12 billion industry that experienced 1.3 percent growth between 2012 and 2017. It employs approximately 261,189 people and there are about 121,737 catering busi- nesses in the U.S. The most recent trends are new menu items and a wider range of ser- vices that better meet client require- ments, according to IBISWorld. Recent growth is from recovery in consumer spending and corporate profits, and the catering industry is expected to reach all-time highs [in revenue] over the next five years. Much of this growth is due to up- dated equipment technology geared toward the catering segment. Induc- tion cooking has raised the bar as well as eciencies, while versatile combi ovens have become standard for events with plated meals. When it comes to food trends, According to West Des Moines, Iowa- based ITA Group, destination-specific cuisine is hot in the catering segment. This gives guests a local-centric ex- perience that is unique to the region. It may include local beer and wine, ingredients sourced from local farms and suppliers as well as dishes spe- cific to the region. Rather than buets, which are passé, dining out, including at catered events, is all about the experience. To be successful, caterers need to ad- dress customers' curiosity about food origins, diners' expanding palates and their quest for the unusual. NOVEMBER 2018 • SPONSORED CONTENT • 43

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