Chocolate producer Callebaut recently held a cookery demonstration that showed retailers how to take advantage of the food-to-go trend at six key meal occasions.
Based around six recipes the demonstration, at Hotel Indigo in Birmingham, was based on Callebaut research which showed 50% of people in the 16-34 millennial age bracket choose a sweet option when buying food on-the-go.
Here are the key things we learned from the event:
Breakfast – chocolate yoghurt pot with honey-coated muesli
The yoghurt pot showed how retailers could incorporate chocolate into their breakfast offer, taking advantage of the 56% of consumers who told Callebaut they would pick a chocolate snack as part of their breakfast or lunch.
Mid-morning – chocolate bar with fruit & nuts
Demonstrating the sort of product retailers could offer as a mid-morning snack, 64% of consumers told Callebaut they are tempted by a chocolate treat when ordering a hot drink. Retailers can also score points by making such treats themselves, with 61% of consumers saying they prefer a handmade treat over a mass-produced bar or biscuits.
Lunch – chocolate sandwich cake with mango & vanilla mousse
According to Callebaut’s research, lunch is the most popular time for picking up food-on-the-go, with 49% of consumers doing so. With half of millennials choosing a sweet over a savoury option, the sandwich showed how retailers can produce a convenient, hand-held dessert at lunchtime.
Afternoon – cocoa bar cake with fresh-cut fruit
Following on from the mid-morning snack option, the cocoa cake presented a product more geared to the afternoon market. Made with cocoa powder instead of chocolate, it also illustrated the fact that high-fat cocoa powder could be used instead of chocolate, without having to remove the word chocolate from the product name.
Beverley Dunkley, head of Callebaut’s chocolate academy, said at the demonstration: “If you use cocoa powder, which has a high fat percentage of say over 20%, you can call it chocolate.”
Evening snack – popcorn
Dunkley suggested that making popcorn in a shop added “a bit of theatre” for retailers. As a possible evening snack with good sharing applications, it also fitted well with Callebaut’s research on restaurant desserts, which found 65% of millennials would take a dessert away with them from a restaurant if it was an option.
Healthy snacking – healthy snack bar
Chocolate offers a way to tap into the healthy snacking trend, especially with women: 69% of female consumers wanted healthier options, which included chocolate.
Dunkley said: “It’s amazing how many people want to pick up a chocolate as a health option.”
Dunkley also offered advice on packaging the treats, and said: “You want a nice clear bag so you can see the product, and with a nice easy tie.”