In the last two quarters, chicken has overtaken pork as the most ordered protein in the U.K. when eating out of home.
Overall, both protein and non-protein visits increased as the foodservice industry continued to grow in Q1 2017. Visits were up +1.0 percent, growth that was spread across most channels. Quick service restaurants (QSR) were up +2.1 percent, and full service restaurants (FSR) were up +2.5 percent.
Fifty-four percent of meals eaten out of home include a protein. In the last year (YE data to March 2017), chicken became the most important protein at lunch and dinner, accounting for more than 20 percent of visits.
In QSR, chicken is included in 17 percent of visits – making it 5 percent more important than beef. Chicken has also taken precedence in FSR, where people increasingly order it at lunch.
The increased incidence of protein is driven both by operators, who are bringing new products to the market, and by consumers who want to both eat well and treat themselves when they eat out of home. Chicken has grown in popularity as it is regarded as a healthier protein, and as restaurants have found new and more exciting ways to serve it.
Since 1975, CREST®, NPD's flagship information service for the foodservice industry, has monitored all aspects of how consumers use restaurants and foodservice by rigorously tracking visits to commercial and non-commercial foodservice establishments. CREST arms manufacturers and operators with market dynamics from the consumer perspective, allowing them to monitor the total foodservice industry or examine specific segments, categories, chains, or food items. CREST tracks consumer foodservice usage in Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, France, Germany, Italy, Japan, Russia, Spain, the United Kingdom, and the United States.