Trends Affecting the Toronto Restaurant Industry in 2019

By September 23, 2019 News
CHI Blog

Trends Affecting the Toronto Restaurant Industry in 2019

The restaurant industry is always changing, and in our age of technology, those changes come even quicker. It is crucial to keep an eye on the latest trends in your industry, especially if you are in the restaurant industry.

Here at CHI Real Estate, we help buyers find the best restaurants for sale in Toronto. Are you looking for Toronto restaurant brokers? We can help, but first we’d like you to understand what the market looks like today.

Food and culture are important parts of this city. Here are several trends that are dominating the Toronto restaurant industry in 2019.

1. Sustainable Options

Sustainability is popular in just about every industry across the world now. A recent 2018 Food & Health Survey from the International Food Information Council Foundation shows some stats to back up how sustainability is becoming popular in the restaurant industry. Here’s what they found:

  • Over half of restaurant guests look at sustainability as something that’s important to them.
  • 66% of all guests will spend more just on sustainable options.
  • 66% of people will choose restaurants depending on the sustainable options available.

The popular sustainability factors that people care about are:

  1. Food made from fresh, natural/organic ingredients.
  2. Environmentally Friendly.
  3. Company commitment to social value.

Guests of all ages care about our planet more than ever, and they try to do their part. Where they eat and how they eat are ways they are trying to make a difference. Restaurants are responding by being more sustainable by changing processes, choosing different ingredients, and looking at where they buy from.

This is a major trend in the restaurant industry today that doesn’t look like it is going anywhere.

2. Cannabis/CBD-infused Food & Drinks

On Oct. 17, 2019, marking the first anniversary since recreational marijuana sales commenced in Canada, rules governing the sale of derivative pot products will officially go into effect. Derivatives are non-dried-flower marijuana products. Examples include edibles, concentrates, vapes, topicals, and nonalcoholic infused beverages.

According to a recently published survey by Restaurants Canada on 2019 Hot Trends, chefs identified Cannabis/CBD-infusion as the number one up-and coming trend in the industry. 

Cannabis legalization is sweeping over North America – 10 states plus Washington, D.C., have all legalized and this is creating a new and exciting opportunity for those in the food and beverage industry.

3. Delivery Options

People want to eat at home in 2019, and restaurants can wait for them to want to leave the house, or they can make it easy for them to order online. Platforms like Uber Eats, Skip the Dishes, and more are paving the way for this to happen quickly and conveniently.

The digital food ordering industry alone is a $1.8-billion industry.

Soon, drone delivery will become popular in big cities, and that will change the way things are done once again. Get your restaurant on a popular food delivery platforms, and new people will find your restaurant without even leaving the house.

4. Meat Alternatives

The plant-based movement is beyond just being a sustainable option. It has become something entirely different, where meat-eaters are ordering Beyond the Meat burgers and loving it.

You can now find plant-based alternatives to a ton of different meats in grocery stores and they are moving from shelves very quickly.

Restaurants are adapting and are finding a way to offer meat alternatives in dishes. Be creative, and you could become a social media hit among guests.

When asked why they like meat alternatives, here’s how people answered in that 2018 survey:

  1. 52% of people say they like it for the taste.
  2. 39% of people eat plant-based alternatives for health reasons.
  3. 13% of people say it is because it is better for the environment.
  4. 11% of people say because of animal protection factors.

5. More Flavour

People are demanding more flavours in their food. This means more spices, hotter sauces, more varieties, and more ‘wow factor’ when looking at your menu.

Millennials enjoy seeing more global flavours at restaurants and restaurants are adapting by providing new flavours that many people may have never tasted.

6. Technology & Automation

All sorts of technologies are advancing inside restaurants in 2019. From self serve ways to order food, to offering in-house wifi – these small technologies will draw people in and make their experience more enjoyable.

If a restaurant can automate aspects of their process, guests will enjoy it. Smart screens and drink kiosks are one way restaurants are doing this.

7. Local Options

Local products or ingredients are top of mind, and customers care more about eating local in 2019.

It could a local craft beer they see available at your restaurant, or it could be the fact that you buy vegetables from a local farm down the road – guests care about this and restaurants should make an effort to buy local and promote it.

8. Appetizers as Meals

Attention spans are shorter than ever these days, and that goes for meals as well.

More guests are choosing a few smaller meals rather than one main entree. Many restaurants are bulking up their small-plate menu and showcasing them on the front page. Guests aren’t making it past this first page these days, as the idea of 3 smaller appetizers is very appealing to people.

9. Food To Go

In our fast-paced world, many people enjoy a meal that they can order, pickup, and eat on the run.

Offering a quick and easy pickup procedure is very appealing to people. Ordering food online and then picking up is something people want, and people will pay more for it.

Having some sort of pick up process in place is a trend that more restaurants are jumping on board with, especially in a fast-paced city like Toronto.

10. Fusion Restaurants

Food fusion is a type of cooking that combines food into one dish. Restaurants are now combining contrasting traditions and techniques into one meal.

This is a popular trend that has become more and more popular in the last couple of years. In 2019, more restaurants in Toronto are using fusion foods methods to create original, unique dishes.

This type of cooking allows restaurants to experiment by combining many foods from all over the world.

Looking for a Toronto Restaurant Broker? We Can Find You the Best Restaurants for Sale in Toronto

All of these things are popular trends in the Toronto restaurant industry in 2019. Across the city, new restaurants are formed out of these popular trends, and older restaurants are adapting to appeal to a younger generation.

CHI Real Estate has worked in Toronto as restaurant brokers for many years. We offer professional and valuable expertise and can help you sell your restaurant or find a restaurant for sale in Toronto.

What are you waiting for? Contact CHI Real Estate today to learn more.

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