Chilean Citrus Committee Research Highlights Fresh Lemon Menu Trends and Opportunities
SAN CARLOS, CA - A multilevel foodservice research project was conducted by the Chilean Citrus Committee to better understand foodservice operators’ attitudes surrounding lemons from Chile, identify purchase drivers for fresh lemons in the U.S., and gain insights around menu opportunities for fresh lemons.
According to a press release, the Committee teamed up with food industry market research firm Datassential to help with the MenuTrends database, comprised of 4,800 restaurants, and also included Chilean lemons in an eight-question omnibus survey of 400+ foodservice operators nationwide.
Some highlights from the Omnibus and MenuTrends reports include:
- Top chain operators most often use lemons on spring and summer menus, introducing them most frequently in June—in the heart of Chilean lemon season
- Many operators aren’t aware that lemons are available from Chile, but when asked about their perception of fruit from Chile, communicated trust in the quality and integrity of the fruit
- More than 96% of fine dining restaurants use lemons on their menus, but QSR and fast casual restaurants have witnessed the highest increase in lemon usage, at 34% and 20% respectively
- Use of lemons is projected to grow by 5.5% over the next four years
As stated in the report, 75 percent of consumers report liking the flavor of this citrus fruit. With more than 56,000 tons exported to North America in 2018, lemons from Chile are available between May and October. Over the past four years, the favorability of lemons has increased 9 percent, reaching 70 percent of consumers in restaurants.
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