The campus dining customs of yesterday are transforming into modern experiences. Today’s students – and tomorrow’s consumers – are not satisfied with the same foodservice choices of their parents. Instead, they’re branching out and insisting on greater diversity and convenience.
- More college students are eating meals from on-campus food-service operations, with about half buying food and beverages from campus establishments once a week. Students partake most from menus that have a variety of options, including ethnic cuisines that provide international students a taste of home, as well as fresh ingredients and customizable items.
- The grab-and-go foodservice model is growing as students also reach for small, fresh, on-the-go snacks. Shareable eats featuring a wider variety of small portions, like Tapas, allow students to try multiple items or share with friends.
- Colleges are combatting food waste with enhanced menu planning technology. The functionality available in inventory management solutions has expanded significantly in just the last few years. Foodservice directors have advanced tools to optimize inventory levels based on real-time consumption data, thus lowering food costs and reducing waste.
- From mobile app ordering and on-campus kiosks to unstaffed minimarts, tech amenities are on the rise. Access to self-ordering helps time-strapped students place and pay for orders using their smartphones or strategically-placed kiosks.