By Roger Stewart, Managing Editor

U.S. foodservice operators have adapted their menus to reflect a more diverse population in recent years. Research on menu trends presented during the National Restaurant Show at McCormick Place indicated Asian and Middle Eastern cuisine are making significant inroads. As restaurants change their menus to reflect more diverse consumer tastes, convenience service operators have to recognize a wider range of customer preferences to win their fair share of consumer food spending.

Researchers Lizzy Freier, managing editor of menu analysis for Technomic, a foodservice researcher, and Nancy Kruse, the president of The Kruse Company, a foodservice consultancy, presented highlights from a 2018 Technomic survey and offered an analysis of ethnic trends in U.S. foodservice.

The menu samples demonstrated that Asian and Middle Eastern cuisine are on the rise in all U.S. geographic regions, not just those with large Asian and Middle Eastern populations.