Fast food brands jump on board pumpking flavor trend with innovative menu items.
Industry News
Pumpkin has long reigned as king of the fall, but this year, limited-service brands are not just adding a pumpkin pastry and calling it a season. Instead, several quick-service and fast-casual concepts introduced non-pumpkin products and innovative spins on the pumpkin flavor, while also launching...
Industry News
Johnny Rockets can now support two out of three characteristics of "Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives." The full-service concept announced this week that it will spin-off its Americana brand with four quick-service prototypes, from a standalone drive-thru unit and drive-in accompaniment to a pop-up shop...
Quick service restaurant brands hire workers by the season to cover busy times.
Human Resources
Running a quick-service restaurant often requires relying on seasonal employees who come from high school or college, or stay-at-home parents who work when school is in session. Many of these employees tend not to stick around for longer than a season, which means operators must constantly invest...
Competition
Once a hallmark of classic fast-food joints, the drive-thru operation is getting a fast casual–style facelift thanks to chains like Dallas-based Which Wich. The customizable sandwich concept opened its second drive-thru unit this summer in Crystal Lake, Illinois, to offer more convenience, says...
Fast food restaurant giant serves customer needs through charitable foundation.
Charitable Giving
Four hundred and fifty million dollars. That’s $450 million—nearly half a billion dollars. It’s a big chunk of change, approximately what McAlister’s Deli and Auntie Anne’s each did in system-wide sales last year. It’s also, according to company estimates, about what Ronald McDonald House Charities...
Competition
Inspired by the cuisine of his wife’s native Hawaii, Southern California’s ubiquitous taquerias, and fast casual’s continued surge, Christopher Campbell launched Braddah’s Island Style in July 2013. The novel Las Vegas–based concept puts a Hawaiian spin on made-to-order burritos, bowls, tacos, and...
Outside Insights
Many vendors slap the phrase “mobile payment system” on their products hoping to increase their appeal, adding to misperceptions of what the technology entails. In reality, this broad term can encompass several different things, including open-loop mobile wallets like Google Wallet and closed-loop...
Industry News
Editor’s Note: In the limited-service restaurant industry, some brands become standard bearers for the rest of the business, prime examples for how to run certain aspects of a restaurant. McDonald’s, of course, has long been one for its marketing, scale, and efficiency. In the last five years,...
More Wall Street investors look to buy stock in fast casual and quick service concepts.
The Push for Public
When fast-casual chain Zoës Kitchen Inc. debuted on the New York Stock Exchange last April, the Plano, Texas–based Mediterranean-style eatery recorded its initial public offering at $87.5 million. Satisfying an investor appetite for investments within the trendy fast-casual space, Zoës’ strong...
Quick service restaurants relaunch to build franchising program.
Franchise Fixes
Companies have good reasons for acquiring franchise brands. Often they see potential in a brand and hope to use their own resources to build it into a national contender. Many brands, though, need a healthy dose of TLC after acquisition. And some companies have found that a good rebranding can...
The One-Stop Shop
Convenience stores are increasingly taking a larger slice out of the quick-serve pie with fresh food offerings. It’s become such a lucrative business for C-stores that Sheetz, the Pennsylvania-based C-store chain that this week opened its 500th location, is planning stores designed more as fast...
Quick service restaurant executives run charity effort to raise funds for cancer research.
A Personal Connection
When Lori Newcomb found out she had stage III ovarian cancer last year, she made it her mission to learn more about the disease and help other women fighting the same battle. She sat down with her husband, Chris Newcomb, cofounder and CEO of Southern quick-service chain Newk’s Eatery, and together...
Quick service brands add sustainable seafood items to fight ocean climate change.
Sea Change
Though U.S. consumption is well below other proteins today, seafood will likely be an increasingly important part of the American diet in the years to come. The country’s population is predicted to grow by 89 million between 2010 and 2050 to 401 million people. More people require more food—and...
10 Challenges for Fast-Casual Leaders
While the fast-casual category continues to be the fastest-growing industry sector, the road in 2015 will be bumpy. We will see constant change and challenges around every corner. For industry leaders, there are issues that will keep even the most seasoned executive awake at night.  Here is my top...