New Opportunity for Micro Markets as Cafeterias Adapt To Change

April 29, 2020

According to many operators, consumption levels of fresh foods are currently higher than ever before in micro markets. Workplaces are relying on their trusted operators to provide an ongoing supply of safe and delicious packaged foods through their micro market. That trend is expected to continue once workplaces are repopulated.

As an operator, are you prepared to meet the demand? 

“Buffets are going away.”

In the post Covid-19 office environment, fresh food provided by a micro market will likely take on greater significance for two reasons:

1.     There will be an initial reluctance to venture out to a lunch spot and options could be somewhat limited. While fresh food is rarely a pantry service item, it is always part of a micro market. Operators will need to be prepared for increased breakfast and lunchtime sales.

2.     The open salad bar or office buffet may need to adapt or be put on temporary hold. It is likely that offices will follow the lead of the hotel industry for advice. According to Rudy Tauscher, general manager of the Four Seasons Hotel, buffets are going away for an undetermined period of time.

Micro market coupons gaining popularity

Instead, offices will turn to their micro market operator as a trusted source for safe, packaged sandwiches and salads. Micro Market coupons, already popular among workplaces that are currently open, will become an easy solution for offices who seek to safely reward their employees with a free breakfast or lunch.

Of course, operators must prepare to meet the demand which will require additional equipment, careful planning and an increased frequency of fresh food deliveries.

A creative solution from Fixturelite

Troy Geis, CEO and Co-Founder of Fixturelite, the leading supplier of micro market retail displays, seating and design features, said operators need to consider “pop-up” solutions for their clients, such as Fixturelite’s under counter refrigeration from Minus Forty, combined with added shelving that can easily be deployed as a catering solution.

“We offer the only under counter refrigeration system with a built in health lock,” said Geis, who added that his team can provide customized pop-up solutions that be moved from one room to another. “Once your clients have defined their needs regarding office catering, Fixturelite is ready to provide support with products that will meet those needs,” he added.

Fresh food – free to the employees on special occasions, or subsidized on a daily basis – either way, it can be a big win for operators who utilize our creative solutions to meet the demand,” said Geis. “At the same time, operators need to increase their offerings and their inventory, plan carefully and elevate their service to the highest possible level.”

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