Monthly Archives: December 2014

Millennials Just Want to Have…Fresh?

We have seen the future, and it is fresh: fresh food, that is. Market research firm The NPD millennials are demanding fresh food Group recently updated their market report on the future of eating, and they found that fresh food consumption is expected to rise by 11 percent in the next five years. The youngest generations, Generation Z (age 0 to 23) and Millennials (age 24 to 37), are the primary drivers of this trend.

The study reported forecasts for all three meals. Fresh food consumption at breakfast is expected to rise by nine percent over the next five years, while lunch and dinner boast prospective growth of seven percent and five percent, respectively. Snacking is expected to follow the same trend, with freshness and nutrition rivaling convenience in importance to consumers.

Many Baby Boomers (people born between 1946 and 1964) are already tending to eat better in order to stay healthier for longer. Now Millennials are joining this healthy eating trend—favoring foods that are high in protein, calcium, and whole grains and low in fat, sodium, and sugar.

USConnect’s vending machines and Bistro To Go! offer many of the fresh foods that meet the needs of all generations. Look for The Right Choice… For a Healthier You™ on many of USConnect’s fresh items, like healthy chef’s salads, protein-rich Greek yogurt, and delicious artisan sandwiches. These offerings mirror the perimeter of the grocery store: the areas where shoppers find fresh dairy, deli, and produce. Experts urge “shopping the perimeter” to find the freshest foods while avoiding overly-processed, unhealthy ones.

More and more workplaces want to attract Millennials and their younger counterparts, Generation Z. To attract and retain health- and freshness-conscious consumers, businesses will do well to offer a large selection of fresh and healthy foods that employees can access throughout the day. This will be the payoff: happier and healthier employees!

 

It’s Not Always Healthier to Bring a Lunch from Home

For years, pundits have been trumpeting the health value of bringing a lunch from home instead of buying greasy, calorie-laden meals at work. And indeed, a healthy salad brought from home is a better choice than a fast-food burger any day. However, the equation is not as simple as “lunch from home = good, lunch from work = bad.” Common sense tells us that it’s the content of the meal that counts, not its provenance.

US Connect’s healthy options make it easier than ever before to eat a healthy meal at work. From gourmet sandwiches to power-green salads and super fruits, US Connect’s systems provide many ways to get the nutrients you need while enjoying delicious food.

lunch from home may not be the healthier option

And how about that food from home? While there is not a current study on lunches brought to work from home, a 2014 study at Baylor University found some surprising statistics about lunches that kids brought to school instead of eating the school lunch. Lunches brought from home had 88 percent fewer servings of vegetables and 40 percent fewer servings of fruit than school lunches, not to mention almost double the sodium allowed in school lunches. Lunches brought from home also frequently contained desserts and high-sugar drinks, neither of which is provided at school.

Obviously, adults are more in control of their own eating habits than children, who are subject to the choices of their parents and their school cafeterias. But the takeaway from the Baylor study should inform adults’ choices for their own meals as well. Bringing a microwavable meal from home may well be a significantly less healthy option than the ones offered by US Connect workplaces. US Connect’s The Right Choice … for a Healthier You™ program can help you make better nutritional choices without sacrificing the convenience of a workplace meal.