Consumers recently polled by Technomic say they eat chicken more frequently than any other type of meat. Yet despite this high rate of consumption, consumers indicate that opportunities still exist for new poultry applications, particularly at breakfast.
Twenty-five percent of chicken consumers say they would very likely order chicken breakfast sandwiches at restaurants if they were available. The numbers are slightly higher for turkey-eating consumers, with 29 percent saying they would likely order breakfast sandwiches or burritos featuring turkey sausage or bacon.
“Poultry is a very versatile protein that can be positioned in a number of ways for different day parts,” says Technomic EVP Darren Tristano. “We’ve seen an increase in the number of turkey items on breakfast menus, and also some high-profile additions of chicken items at breakfast. If you look at consumers who eat turkey at least occasionally, 22 percent say they are eating it more now for breakfast than they were two years ago, so there is clearly an opportunity.”
To help food industry professionals stay abreast of current issues and evolving consumer need-states in the poultry category, Technomic has developed the Center of the Plate: Poultry Consumer Trend Report.
- For poultry, attributes related to fat content resonate most strongly with consumers as an indicator of healthfulness, and call-outs related to natural processing—especially those that state a lack of additives such as steroids or hormones—are most likely to increase consumer price thresholds.
- When it comes to chicken, limited-service menus put barbecue flavored sandwiches at the forefront, while garlic is the top flavor for full-service chicken entrées.
- Humane animal treatment and environmentally sound practices are of increasing importance to consumers, with more than 50 percent now indicating both of those items as important to them.
- Both limited- and full-service restaurants have increased their use of turkey on the breakfast menu since 2008, positioning turkey sausage and bacon as a lighter, more healthful alternative to pork.