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On The Menu: Sandwiches & Roller Grill Data 2014

Sandwich Growth Opportunities

Although 96% of c-stores and 99% of all non-commercial operators (including nursing homes and long-term care) already offer sandwiches in their operations, it is still considered the menu item with the greatest sales growth potential in the year to come. Sandwiches tied with breakfast items among c-store retailers.

ChannelPercent reporting strong growth expectations
Convenience store54%
College & university32%
Hospital34%

Source: FARE 2014 State of Foodservice Study


Sausage Menu Prevalence, Growth Expectations

Encased and enrobed meats are quite prevalent in c-stores; they’re also served at the vast majority of non-commercial outlets surveyed in the study. With QSR/fast-casual chains tending to focus on a particular menu category—pizza, sandwiches—it’s not surprising their numbers are comparatively low. Some may consider that an untapped opportunity, but not the participants of this study.

ChannelPercent offeringPercent reporting
strong growth
expectations
Convenience store85%18%
QSR/Fast casual28%0%
College & university92%1%
Hospital86%0%

Source: FARE 2014 State of Foodservice Study


Sausage Service Style

Non-commercial is largely split between cooking encased meats to order and hot-holding such items, though most prefer crew service. The majority of c-stores provide self-serve roller grills, but a notable 19% provide the menu items crew-served from other holding equipment.

How do you offer encased food items such as sausages and hot dogs in your operations?

 Convenience storeQSR/Fast casualCollege & universityHospital
Crew-serve, grilled/cooked to order11%28%52%43%
Crew-serve, from other holding equipment besides roller grill19%9%44%51%
Self-serve, from roller grill62%0%14%7%
Crew-serve, from roller grill9%0%11%7%
Do not off er encased food items15%64%6%12%

Source: FARE 2014 State of Foodservice Study


Sandwich Service Style

The majority of c-stores offer grab-and-go cold sandwiches, followed by grab-and-go hot options. Grab-and-go cold offerings are prevalent in hospitals as well, while made-to-order is the most common style in restaurants and C&U.

How do you offer sandwiches in your operations?

 Convenience storeQSR/Fast casualCollege & universityHospital
Made to order44%94%93%88%
Prepackaged, customer takes from cooler85%2%72%64%
Prepackaged, customer takes from hot-holding case54%0%21%25%
Prepackaged, customer takes from freezer15%0%11%2%
Do not offer sandwiches4%6%0%0%

Source: FARE 2014 State of Foodservice Study

NEXT: Top Sandwich Ingredients

Top Sandwich Ingredients

Percent of menus offering

The following data from Food Genius reveals the most common sandwich types and ingredients across what the research firm categorizes as quick-service, fast-food, fast-casual, quick-casual and family-dining segments. Of the 87,000 unique menus that Food Genius tracks, 85,000 come from independent operations, hence the close alignment between the overall percentages and the independent percentages.

TypeOverallChainIndependent
Styles   
Club28%40%28%
Submarine27%31%27%
BLT27%29%27%
Cheesesteak19%20%19%
Sandwich Wrap19%25%19%
Reuben15%16%15%
Hoagie9%11%9%
French dip5%9%5%
Breakfast3%4%3%
Cuban2%3%2%
    
Breads   
Bread roll24%41%24%
Bun14%30%14%
Pita12%10%12%
Rye bread9%11%9%
Toast8%9%8%
Kaiser roll6%8%6%
Ciabatta5%14%5%
Bagel5%6%5%
Croissant5%6%5%
Baguette5%7%5%
Focaccia4%6%4%
Hoagie roll4%8%4%
White bread3%4%3%
French bread3%5%3%
English muffin3%3%3%
    
Proteins   
Chicken81%88%81%
Pork72%78%72%
Beef70%70%70%
Seafood58%60%58%
Turkey56%59%56%
Ham55%57%55%
Bacon52%65%51%
Fish52%55%52%
Steak42%44%41%
Sausage40%43%40%
    
Cheeses   
Swiss cheese37%42%37%
Provolone29%36%29%
Mozzarella29%32%29%
Cheddar28%44%28%
Parmesan21%32%21%
American21%27%21%
Feta11%13%11%
Blue11%16%11%
Fresh mozzarella11%10%11%
Pepperjack7%13%7%
    
Sauces   
Mayonnaise42%57%42%
Salad dressing38%56%38%
Mustard27%41%26%
Ranch dressing17%35%16%
Barbecue sauce13%25%13%
Honey mustard13%20%13%
Caesar dressing12%19%12%
Pesto11%20%11%
Hot sauce11%16%11%
Marinara sauce11%18%10%

Source: Food Genius, first quarter 2014

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