31st January 2017
This year's hot snacking trends for meetings and events
After breakfast but before lunch and after lunch but before dinner – these grey areas were once considered to be unhealthy interludes between meals, a place where the greedy dwell.
Some reports have suggested 2017 could be the year that traditional eastern snacks such as deep fried grasshopper, tarantula, scorpion and cockroach are introduced in western workplaces.
Attitudes towards snacking are changing and less of us than ever are concerned with eating three square meals. In fact, snacking now accounts for 50% of all eating occasions and bringing good food to hungry people at the right time is an operation of growing importance.
We spoke to Riya Grover, CEO of workplace lunch specialists Feedr to get her opinion on what’s hot and what’s not in the world of snacking trends for meetings and events.
According to the market research people at Mintel in their food and drink 2017 report, aspirations for healthier lifestyles are motivating consumers to prioritise fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, grains and botanicals and this reinforces our interest in vegetarian and vegan snack products. In other words, if you’re a veggie or a vegan, snacks will catch you up this year.
Riya from Feedr has also seen an increase in the demand for vegan, gluten free and dairy free foods. She explains, “people are increasingly conscious of the way that they’re eating and variety is really important for your wellbeing. Being able to access different food options means you can be healthier on a Monday and more indulgent towards the end of the week.
First plants and now animals, some reports have suggested 2017 could be the year that traditional eastern snacks such as deep fried grasshopper, tarantula, scorpion and cockroach are introduced in western workplaces. Fortunately, Riya doesn’t think insect based foods are appropriate just yet.
“Food doesn’t have to be complex or innovative and cutting edge, its more about removing some of the bad ingredients that we’ve become accustomed to. At the heart of what we do it’s simple, people should question those things rather than looking for superfoods.”
Feedr are passionate about the reduction of waste and actively encourage sharing formats from companies ordering for large meetings or events. Riya continued, “aggregating food for delegates and combining deliveries means we are efficient, but we also encourage our vendors to use eco-friendly packaging that can be recycled.”
Riya’s view on sustainability is supported by Mintel who have reported that roughly one third of the food produced for global human consumption is wasted but, in 2017, the stigma associated with imperfect produce will begin to fade. Some studies, say Mintel, have even found that apples with blemishes are higher in antioxidants than non-blemished apples.
Healthy workforce initiatives
Pioneered by companies such as Google and Facebook, creating an amazing work environment with access to great food and beautiful meeting spaces can add tremendously to your overall work experience believes Riya.
“If you don’t snack well, it can make your overall perception of your environment very negative but I like to look at the positives. If you do eat well at work, I think it’s such an important aspect of your afternoon productivity.
“I think a company can play a large role in helping its employees to eat well even if they’re not paying for it. Companies don’t have to provide food, but if they are they should be procuring from great vendors because, ultimately, when individuals choose the meals themselves, they can pick whatever they want but, when your company is choosing on your behalf, they have a responsibility to get things that are good for your body.”