There's increased demand for healthy items.

It’s well established that having a kids menu is an important way to draw families into quick-service establishments—Datassential reports that 77 percent of parents choose a restaurant that both kids and adults enjoy. What some operators may not have considered is the growing number of millennial parents with buying power, and with it, the increasing demand for healthy items on those kids menus.  

“With more moms and dads knowing what eating healthy looks like, quick-service restaurants should be looking to offer something nutritious that can be served in the store, or in the drive thru,” says Todd Michael, Knouse Foods director of foodservice sales. “For them, it’s so important to have that perfect solution, which we believe is applesauce.” 

Applesauce is not just an easy way for parents to add fruit to a kid’s diet, but when packaged correctly, it can also be perfect for families with an on-the-go lifestyle. Any parent knows that bringing your children to a full service restaurant can be an ordeal, and the quick-service sector has an opportunity to leverage products that lessen that burden. 

Michael says three of the top 10 largest quick-service brands in the country menu Musselman’s Squeezables, and they appreciate the fact that the product can be used as a standalone snack or as the healthy component to a kid’s meal. In the era of high turnover, it’s equally important that Squeezables require virtually zero labor, are shelf stable, and lessen waste. 

“Labor is so challenging right now for operators, but this is a product where you don’t have to have someone scoop it out and put it into a dish to serve it,” Michael says. “And from a food safety standpoint, risk is eliminated because from the time it is packaged in our factory to the point it is consumed, that is the first time it is opened.” 

Michael is especially proud of his brand’s commitment to using locally sourced, American-grown apples, which particularly resonates with the growing number of millennials becoming parents. 

“Musselman’s Squeezables are a convenient yet healthy product that kids love and parents will approve of,” Michael says. “Plus, not only will adding this product to the menu please your customers, it will also boost your sales, as menuing healthy kids options will allow parents to leave the snacks at home and spend more at your operation.” 

By Charlie Pogacar

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