To be in the foodservice industry means that you need to be able to adapt, overcome, and improvise for any situation that’s thrown at you. This is the case as many restaurants are making the move to delivery and takeout in light of the recent pandemic. This means that more and more eateries are transitioning to ghost kitchens, which have come a long way since we first reported on Zuul Kitchens in New York City. To help with the efforts, US Foods is launching its own US Foods Ghost Kitchens program. The program will help restaurant operators navigate the new waters of the ghost kitchen concept in their establishments as a way to add a new revenue method.
“The Ghost Kitchens program was developed in response to growing interest among our customers, but we’ve also been tracking the trend, and ghost kitchens are projected to reach a $1 trillion global market by 2030, making them an attractive concept for operators even after dine-in restrictions are lifted,” said Jim Osborne, Senior Vice President of Customer Strategy and Innovation.
Currently, with dine-in restrictions due to COVID-19, most restaurants are experiencing challenges with the minimum dining room capacity which operators say is needed to make reopening work financially. As a result, 75 percent of restaurant operators now consider off-premise dining to be their best growth opportunity.
Ghost kitchens, also referred to as dark or virtual kitchens, are professional kitchen facilities set up to support delivery or carryout meals only, offering restaurant operators an opportunity to start an additional revenue stream.
“We also know ghost kitchens are a departure from the traditional brick and mortar format, so some independent operators need help to jumpstart a new venture, which is why our program takes out all the guesswork,” Osborne continued. “We help the operator through every major decision. And since operators using the program often set up within their existing facilities, we’re able to help them open a ghost kitchen with minimal start-up costs in a matter of weeks, with the goal of higher profit margins and expanded customer reach.”
US Foods is leading the industry with its first-to-market, easy-to-activate program for operators exploring a ghost kitchen service model, noted the press release. The program will help restaurant operators drive profits by:
With the addition of this program, US Foods customers now have access to exclusive resources developed to streamline the process of starting a ghost kitchen, including proprietary technology to help identify menu opportunities, a detailed playbook to guide decision making, dedicated marketing support, webinars, and one-on-one consultations with US Foods specialists.
More information about the US Foods Ghost Kitchens program can be found at the company's website.
What impact will US Foods’ new program have on the foodservice industry? Deli Market News will continue to track the news as it come in, so keep reading to discover the latest.