Magazine: Masters of adaptation

By: trademagazin Date: 2012. 11. 13. 12:00

It is worth following the changes fast food restaurants have gone through recently. What is most striking is that they are rapidly adapting to changing trends and consumer habits. Consumer expectations do not concern restaurant types but the services they provide, which trend leads to some kind of convergence in the end. But what kind of future do restaurant owners have to adapt to? Technological and IT development require considerable capital investment and restaurant chains have a great advantage in this field, but networking sites constitute a good alternative. Despite the economic recession the prestige of gastronomy is growing, people learn more and more about food and eating, therefore their expectations are higher when they go to a restaurant. The world of gastronomy is also going through a globalisation process, different base materials are now available all over the world and borders between different types of cuisine seem to disappear. What do we call a fast food restaurant? A restaurant where they sell food that is characteristic of the place and can be eaten there or taken away. Fast food restaurants usually work in chains, using a successful business model – this way units can adapt to changes rapidly. One of the drawbacks of being part of a large chain is that the units often become the victims of generalisation and the scapegoat of the health lobby.

This is the reason why in the past 15 years restaurant chains started modernising themselves: they started offering healthier food and paying more attention to the environment. What is more, units are being redesigned in line with the trend of premiumisation. Several Hungarian fast food units have also been completely refurbished recently. All these steps indicate that one of the most important prerequisites of survival is the capability of adaptation! Traditional restaurants are also changing and perhaps they should pay more attention to what the big ones are doing. The two types of restaurants are getting closer to each other – the success of fast casual restaurants indicates this really well: they appear to be closer to fast food units but the food they offer is better, sometimes guests are served by waiters and these places even use a printed menu. The global turnover of these restaurants is growing several times faster than that of fast food units. Let us learn from each other!

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