CGA business development manager Craig Jackson

Supporting technology and engaging staff can help suppliers and wholesalers connect better with foodservice businesses and consumers.

That was one of the messages from CGA’s business development manager Craig Jackson at an Introduction to Wholesale event on Wednesday (16 October), hosted by the Federation of Wholesale Distributors.

In an overview of top trends in the foodservice sector, he highlighted the need to invest in both business and consumer-facing technology, including apps. CGA’s Business Leaders’ Survey shows that half (51%) of industry bosses are stepping up their investment in tech in 2019, with just 7% reducing it—and any support that suppliers can provide will be welcomed. “Suppliers have the opportunity to understand operators tech developments better and to drive mutual growth,” Jackson said.

Suppliers and wholesalers can also add crucial backing to operators’ ethical work, including investment in local communities, sourcing environmentally friendly packaging and ingredients, and engaging with staff. Nearly nine in ten (87%) leaders cite engaged and motivated staff as very important to the success of their business—but only 36% rate their training and development as market leading. “By engaging with staff, offering training and supporting with things like menu ideas, you can add value to operators and stand out from other suppliers,” Jackson said.

He also gave the Introduction to Wholesale event a whistlestop tour of the out-of-home eating and drinking market, noting a recent dip in optimism from CGA’s Business Confidence Survey as Brexit looms—but by sharp contrast with the retail sector, the frequency of eating and drinking-out visits has been holding up well in 2019.

To discover more about CGA’s analysis of the entire foodservice sector and in-depth consumer trends, contact Craig Jackson.

     

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