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Thursday, September 10, 2009

Healthier kids' meals

In the recession, most businesses are suffering, especially restaurants. To entice customers, some restaurants are offering family deals by advertising free kids’ meals. Is the free kids’ meal really the draw for a family? The article “Could Healthier Kids’ Menus be Stronger Family Draws” by www.supermarketguru.com explains why the content of the kids’ meal as compared to the price is what brings families into the restaurant.

Remembering my days as I child, it seems that most kids’ menus haven’t changed much (chicken fingers, mac & cheese, grilled cheese, etc). Why are these same few meals the standard for kids? Mintel Menu Insights (a data collection agency with data from 350 of the largest US chain restaurants and 150 independent restaurants) reports that 77% of children are willing to order meals include vegetables and 86% would order meals that include fruit. Mintel also reports that only 30% of parents think their children eat healthfully in restaurants. “Our research shows parents want more nutritious options for their kids, and children are open to fruits, veggies and healthier versions of standard fare. The generic kids’ menu really doesn’t meet the needs and desires of today’s families,” says Maria Caranfa, a registered dietitian and director of Mintel Menu Insights.

Healthier kids’ meals article

As a restauranteur, do you think adding healthier kids’ meals will bring more families into your restaurant (and subsequently increasing sales)?

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