Food & Drink franchises offer more opportunity than ever

Recent research illustrates that consumers are still choosing to spend on experiences over material items. A report from Deloitte indicates that planned consumer spend on eating out, drinking in bars and pubs, and every day treats in coffee and sandwich shops is up across the board.

Savvy food and drink outlets are ensuring that they capitalise on this trend and appeal to the widest market possible, making sure menus diversify to meet the dietary needs and preferences of today’s consumer.

There are an estimated 23 million vegetarians and 600,000 vegans in the UK, and recent data from NPD Group suggests that around 300 million eating out visits a year could be influenced by whether or not a venue has vegetarian or vegan options on the menu.

It’s no surprise, then, that well-known names in the franchise sector are evolving their menus to cater to this market.

In time for the famous new year movement, Veganuary, global restaurant giant McDonald’s recently launched a fully vegan meal in the UK for the first time. Diners can now enjoy Veggie Dippers, which have been approved by The Vegan Society, either as an individual purchase or as part of a vegan-friendly meal.

Another global name who quickly responded to consumer demand for vegetarian and vegan options when eating out and on the go is Subway. Regarded as one of the fastest-growing franchises in the world, they operate more than 42,000 franchise units globally.

Colin Hughes, Country Director for Subway UK and Ireland, comments:

“Serving guests our delicious, crave-able food each day is such a rewarding experience and with our ever-evolving menu, Subway franchise owners can be assured they’re offering the latest food trends. For instance, we’ve just launched our new plant based Meatless Meatball Marinara Sub, in addition to already offering a Vegan Patty Sub and Salad.

“We’re always shaking up our menu at Subway as we are constantly innovating. Our guests wanted a meatless version of our iconic Sub, so we made it for them. The Meatless Meatball Marinara is equally as delicious as the original, and a tempting choice for all our guests, whether they are looking for a plant-based alternative, or simply want to enjoy something a little different.”

A franchise in the F&B sector 

For those with ambitions of accessing the out-of-home dining market through their own food or drink outlet, a franchise offers a supportive route to launch and operation.

Along with the backing of established brand, nationwide marketing and often global recognition and trust, a franchise also offers ongoing support from the franchisor’s head office as well as a network of fellow franchisees.

The variety of franchises on offer in the food and beverage industry gives potential franchisees a range of options to choose from. With varying levels of investment needed – from under £10,000 to more than £250,000 – entrepreneurs can pursue premises-based or mobile businesses in the savoury and sweet quick-service market.

There is of course also the huge opportunity offered by the booming coffee market, plus niche opportunities with luxury chocolate retailers like Leonidas, or meal delivery services such as Wiltshire Farm Foods.

The dedicated Food & Beverage Showcase within the The British & International Franchise Exhibition will bring together a wide variety of food and drink brands all seeking new franchisees. Quick-service giants like McDonald’s and Subway will join coffee franchises including Coffee Planet and Puccino’s, while Little Dessert Shop and Leonidas reflect options to serve consumers seeking a sweet treat.

Colin Hughes of Subway comments again:

“We are very much looking forward to meeting potential new franchise owners at The British & International Franchise Exhibition. To be a successful Subway franchise owner, candidates must possess all the right ingredients: from being personable, hardworking, and having business acumen as well as being passionate about the brand, our product and the hospitality industry.

“The Subway franchise has had phenomenal growth in the UK and Ireland in recent years, now with more than 2,600 stores. Every store is individually owned and operated by our franchise owners, who are proud business owners within their local communities, contributing to their local economies. With further growth planned in the UK and Ireland in 2020, we have opportunities for franchise owners to join Subway to open new and existing stores.”

If you would like to find out more about owning and operating a food and drink franchise, or are ready to expand your food and drink franchise portfolio, then come to the Food & Beverage Showcase at The British & International Franchise Exhibition on 31 January and 1 February at Olympia London.

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