Webinar Opportunity: Millennial Coffee Drinkers

S&D Coffee and Teas is hosting a webinar on Young Coffee Drinkers (YCD) Wednesday, July 13th 2016, 2pm ET.

The seminar focuses on how Coffee-drinking millennials—consumers ages 18 to 34—represent untapped opportunities and have the potential to make coffee an integral part of their lifelong consumption patterns.

In order to reach these consumers, food retailers need to understand the distinct ways in which they perceive and talk about coffee.

YCDs, for example, grew up in a “Starbucks world” and are more savvy about coffee. Their expectations are higher. At the same time, they are concerned about how the coffee got here and how it was made. Sustainability is therefore a very important value.

The webinar intends to address these issues and others so that views gain a new way to think about the coffee industry and insight into updated sales strategies.

 

 

To learn more and register, click here.

Why You Should Buy Produce in Chinatown?

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As anyone who’s spent an afternoon nibbling on roast pork while perusing the markets of Chinatown can attest, the neighborhood’s streets are home to an astounding variety of produce and vendors. In terms of fruits and vegetables, it’s an unparalleled shopping destination for the home cook in New York. This is in large part thanks to the remarkably cheap prices, but also the fact that you can consistently find new things to cook. The Wall Street Journal toured the neighborhood with economic botanist and From Farm to Canal Street author Valerie Imbruce, who filled the paper in on how the Chinatown produce economy works.

“You really can’t exaggerate this kind of variety”, says Imbruce. She counted 200 different fruits and vegetables, ranging from lots and lots of cherries to multiple varieties of choy and jackfruit, but also celtuce, long beans, bitter melon, dragon fruit, and all of the durian you would ever want. As far as their low pricing is concerned, Chinatown’s produce markets aren’t cheap because they’re peddling second-rate products, but because they’re actually kind of farm to vendor. Operators are linked to a network of small family farms, like home gardens in south Florida, and minor wholesalers that function independently of those that supply most supermarkets.

Furthermore, with low overheads — no credit cards, minimal staffing, and makeshift sidewalk stands — and collaboration among vendors to get bulk discounts means you’re paying as close to wholesale prices as you ever will. Chinatown’s markups typically run as low as 10 to 12 percent and don’t just beat Whole Foods (a.k.a Whole Paycheck), but also affordable chains like Key Foods.

Read more here.

 

8/15-8/17: CONNECT Mobile Innovation Summit

Registration is open now for the CONNECT Mobile Innovation Summit, to be held from August 15th to 17th in Chicago. In their own words, the event is an opportunity to explore the many opportunities that retailers, restaurants and other B2C enterprises have for leveraging mobile and digital channels to build their brands, increase sales and improve customer engagement, experience and loyalty.

Registration is limited to managers and executives of restaurants, retail and other business-to-consumer organizations.

To read more or register now, click here.

All Pizzas To Be Cooked By Robots?

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A former Silicon Valley executive with a love of pizza and robots is on a quest to make a better pie and deliver it faster than the big chains can. Alex Garden is making robots that make pizza and they are coming for Domino’s.

The future of pie delivery, argues Garden, is being pioneered by robots at his Zume Pizza, and Bloomberg got a look inside the new company. The process seems to involve a team of enormous and very expensive-looking robots preparing pies that then get baked by a giant bank of ovens en route to customers.

One of the robots (her name is Marta) expertly spreads sauce “perfectly but not too perfectly, so it looks just like an artisan product.” Another, named Bruno, then “gently, without disturbing it,” moves the pizza into an 850-degree oven to prebake. Traditional humans are still required for tasks like sprinkling cheese, driving the delivery truck, and walking sealed boxes to customers’ doors, but these seem like minor obstacles, really. After all, even Domino’s has robots that warm pies on the road and diligently hunt down customers using GPS.  Pizza seems the ripest for full automation within fast food, so it’s safe to assume the whole industry is steadily moving toward the all-robot business model.

Right now, Zume’s pies only appear to be available in Mountain View, but Garden warns his company is targeting massive chains like Domino’s and Pizza Hut, which he says he’ll be able to dethrone by offering “the best-tasting pizza in the country delivered in 15 minutes for the same price as any of the other chains.”As Bloomberg points out, there’s “a lot of profit in robot-made pizza.” Just envision one of the major pizza franchises but with “virtually no” humans, Garden calmly instructs everyone. “It would be like Domino’s without the labor component. You can start to see how incredibly profitable that can be.”

Manhattan Food and Bar Leasing Up Double Digits

Across the city, landlords want a seat at the table.  More specifically, they want the seats, and they want the tables inside their buildings.  Fast-casual restaurants, coffee shops, and juice bars are expanding across Manhattan, driven in part by a large millennial workforce and dense, wealthy demographic.

Also, though, as consumers behaviors have changed, opportunity has opened up for foodservice operators.  More and more retail and apparel is being purchased online, which has caused these companies to trim store sizes.  Now, with new inventory available, restaurants are building new locations even faster.  In 2015, the fast-casual segment grew to $44 billion nationwide–an 11.5% increase from 2014, according to Technomic.

Similarly, Manhattan lease transactions in the food and bar category increased 22% in 2015 over 2014, Cushman & Wakefield reports.  Meanwhile, drugstore leases were down 64% and apparel and accessories retails were down 22%.

Where banks and retailers once occupied large-footprint spaces, some landlords are building out food halls or dividing spaces into smaller units.  “You’re getting more [rent] than what a single tenant would pay,” said Brett Herschenfeld, SL Green Managing Director.

To read more, click here.

 

8/20 – 8/24: NY NOW at the Javitz Center

NYNOW2015-20151026023842968.jpgRegistration is now open for both exhibitors and attendees to the NY NOW Home, Lifestyle and Gift Exhibition at the Javitz Center. The event takes place over the course of 5 days, and will feature products from over 2,000 suppliers ranging from food and beverage to gifts and home goods. NY NOW is a unique opportunity to check out the latest in retail, often before it hits the shelves.

To learn more and register for the event, click here.

Tara Paige Travels: Bacchanal, New Orleans

bacchanal-5.jpgAt Tara Paige, we love summer in the city – the patio dining, food festivals and street fairs (not to mention the reduced lines at some of our favorite spots). But we still need to hit the road occasionally, and check out the concepts that have people buzzing all over the country. Which brings us to this special travel edition of our retail spotlight, on Bacchanal – a unique concept off the beaten path in New Orleans, Louisiana. Located in Bywater (just over the canal from the Ninth Ward), Bacchanal highlights the vitality of a city where music comes from every street corner, and great food and wine require no excuses or white tablecloths to enjoy.

The heart of the concept is a simple but rarely imitated one; Bacchanal is a wine and cheese shop with a large backyard, where local musicians play sets from lunch till late night. Guests can browse the shop, chat with the knowledgeable staff about vintages and cheese pairings, and then grab their chosen bottle and an ice bucket and head for the back, where a selection of mismatched patio furniture offers about 100 first-come-first-serve seats for watching the band. Servers will put together a plate of your chosen cheese and charcuterie, and bring it out to the table while you sip and listen. For those feeling a bit more peckish, there’s also a full dinner menu, served out of a small window in the back of the wine store from a kitchen barely big enough for the two cooks working inside. The tables fill up early in the evening, but most are large enough to share between multiple groups of friends, inspiring conversation and new connections.

When they began, Bacchanal was primarily a little-known wine shop on the outskirts of the city. After hurricane Katrina devastated the area, they began hosting guest chef pop-ups with live music each Sunday – helping revitalize the city by bringing its residents together around great food and wine in a neighborhood setting. As their website and owners describe, the business model was not without its legal hurdles, since Bacchanal exists somewhere at the intersection of wine store, restaurant, speakeasy and block party, and was not always licensed to be all those things. We’re glad they took the risk though, and the concept remained intact after their day in court.

The food “is dedicated to the ingredients themselves and the wine that flows with them, it is focused Mediterranean minimalism.” This is somewhat in contrast with the big Cajun flavors to be found in the heart of the French Quarter, for which tourists rightfully travel from thousands of miles. There’s no gumbo on the menu, but there is a fantastic ceviche and a delicate, garlicky bucatini. Many items are seasonal, and local produce is prominantly featured. No matter what guests ultimately order, the Bacchanal experience still captures the spirit of New Orleans: an unpretentious commitment to living life to the fullest, come rain or shine.

Bacchanal is located at 600 Poland Avenue, New Orleans LA, 70117. Visit their website at http://www.bacchanalwine.com.