Published on: March 5, 2009Now available on iTunes…
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Hi, I’m Kevin Coupe and this is MorningNewsBeat Radio, available on iTunes and sponsored this week by Webstop, experts in the art of retail website design.
There are a lot of studies and surveys and reports out there. I’m not sure if there are more than there used to be, or if there just seem to be more because the Internet makes them so much more available. As might be expected, I read a lot of these things. Sometimes I find them believable, sometimes not so much. Sometimes they seem to be consistent and part of a larger, discernable trend…and sometimes they seem to be outliers, and it is hard to figure out how legitimate and accurate they are.
Frankly, it is enough to give us all massive headaches.
Now and then, though, a study gets passed along that catches my attention for all sorts of reasons…and just such a survey came out a few days ago from Sodexo, which is a facilities manager and foodservice provider on hundreds of campuses all over the United States.
The point of this survey was that students’ taste buds are a lot more sophisticated today than they were 20 years ago … which is something that needs to be noted by food retailers that are going to be charged with feeding this segment of the population when it becomes the middle of the bulls eye, responsible for feeding themselves and their families.
Among the favorite foods cited by students: locally-grown fruits and veggie, crispy garlic-ginger chicken wings, green tea and pomegranate smoothies, crab cake sliders, mini samosas, Tilapia Veracruz, and Chicken Molé.
I actually think this is encouraging…
However, I was really interested to see the favorite foods that reportedly were cited by students 20 years ago. They included fruit and cottage cheese plate, chicken nuggets, turkey tetrazzini, chicken chop suey, whatever they could graze from the taco bar, and Algerian lamb stew.
Wait a minute. Algerian lamb stew? You gotta be kidding me. What students exactly were they surveying? (When I went to Loyola Marymount University, we survived on mac and cheese, beer, burgers, pizza, beer, burritos from a local dive called Los Amigos, and did I remember to mention beer? I don't remember anyone ever offering Algerian lamb stew…)
Well, no matter. The real lesson here is that good, healthy and innovative food has become a lot more common than it used to be, especially to college students still in the process of forming their tastes and preferences. This is a trend that needs to be taken seriously by retailers who want to be relevant to these sophisticated shoppers of the future.
For MorningNewsBeat Radio, I’m Kevin Coupe.
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