Leaping into Delivery this Holiday Season

Sponsored by McCain

The way we eat is changing. We want our food to come to us or take it to go.

Online food delivery and mobile ordering apps are drastically changing the business of foodservice and the meaning of convenience. More and more delivery options continue to make their way to market, and the desire for quick and easy is increasingly matched by an unwillingness to sacrifice choice, quality and overall service. And as the digital ordering’ segment of restaurant sales is projected to increase from 6.1 per cent in 2018 to over 10 per cent by 2023 (Foodservice Digital Disruption Report), modernizing in this changing environment will be critical to avoid falling behind.

As you plan your delivery menu, there are three key drivers of success to bear in mind: profitable menu analysis, proper packaging and picking the right items to ensure you’re delivering the quality your customers expect.

Step 1: Your Menu

Menu analysis is an important part of building a successful restaurant. Creating a timely menu that combines craveable, familiar dishes with exceptional service can deliver a winning formula for restaurateurs.

With Thanksgiving and the holiday season just around the corner, it’s important so start preparing your menus for the high-traffic season. The holidays are a great opportunity to attract new customers and demonstrate your chef’s abilities in creating signature holiday menu dishes. And as we approach colder weather, Canadians are more inclined to cozy up inside and have their favourite comfort food brought to their door, so planning your delivery menu should begin as soon as possible following the summer high season.

Operators should consider freshening up their menus and consider adding new items or dishes that offer comfort and nostalgia — and potato products are a great option because they’re so versatile. McCain products do double duty, providing both back of house efficiency and menu versatility since they can act as, or be part of, several menu items — and replace higher cost ingredients throughout the menu.

Simplifying back-end operations and preparation is also key — try planning signature dishes or specials that are easy and quick to executive. In this sense, McCain products do double duty — frozen items help prepare chefs, owners and operators for any unpredictable surges in holiday traffic while also providing the always-ready foundational ingredients to build your own signatures on top of. It’s an easy way to save time without sacrificing quality or flavour.

Step 2: Your Packaging

Equally as important to delivery success is ensuring you’re packaging the food properly. McCain Foodservice tested several delivery packages to determine the best options for packing French fries and appetizers, and found the following tactics worked best:

  • Use open mouth containers and place near the top of the bag
  • Refrain from using Styrofoam
  • Insert napkins between fry containers to absorb steam
  • Vented packaging to release steam and preserve crispness
  • Clear packaging to ensure accuracy
  • Separate hot and cold items
  • Place condiments on the side
  • Seal delivery bag to void tampering

Additionally, consider setting a delivery radius, limiting the distance travelled to within a few kilometres of your restaurant to ensure food arrives hot and fresh.

Step 3: Your Delivery

Finally, ensuring the food being delivered is as good as it is in the restaurant is also critical to success. In fact, according to Technomic, 94 per cent of Canadian consumers expect the same or better food quality when ordering delivery as they do when dining in the restaurant.

Deliver on these expectations by featuring the same signature dishes and side items on your delivery menu as what you’re known for in-restaurant, and make sure you’re aware of the impact packaging has on your food: it’s important to choose ingredients that are optimized for delivery.  

Perfect for delivery, McCain SureCrisp™ is a game-changing fry that allows you to offer a consistently crispy fry across delivery, takeout and on-premise channels. Made to maintain crispiness — for over 30 minutes — from your kitchen to the customer’s door, now you can serve your most profitable side with confidence, no matter where your food is enjoyed.

Adding McCain SureCrisp fries will give you the confidence to tackle delivery, knowing your customers will enjoy and profits won’t suffer.

Finding the right balance between associated costs, what consumers crave, and delivering on expectations with signature dishes is key. Restaurants that can successfully navigate new market opportunity will continue to thrive into the future.