Taking time to get to know operators, listening to their challenges and truly understanding their business is crucial for being a valuable partner in the College &University channel. That’s why we loved attending the 2019 National Conference for The National Association of College & University Food Services (NACUFS). Each year, the event plays host to more than 1,000 college and university dining staff members and provides insight into today’s hot dining trends, product innovations from suppliers and offers an opportunity for operators to meet face-to-face with suppliers to learn about new product solutions that can be incorporated into their foodservice offerings.
Tyson Foodservice takes pride in helping college and university foodservice operators enhance their dining options, especially since students have a variety of locations where they can find a meal on campus. From traditional all-you-care to eat residential dining to retail operations found in the student union, convenience stores, coffee shops and bookstores, a campus is almost like a small town within itself. The foodservice possibilities are endless!
I’m so excited to share some of my favorite takeaways from this year’s event with you!
Sausage, Bacon, Hash Browns… Oh, My!
Whether waking up for an early morning class to studying late at night, students’ schedules vary throughout the day; however, they still crave the comfort and delicious flavors of breakfast when it’s convenient for them. To help meet the demand for all-day breakfast, college and university operators are creating dedicated breakfast stations with favorites like sausage, waffles, bacon, hash browns and omelets that are made to order.
Flavor innovation is strong, with a variety of sweet and global flavors growing for breakfast¹. Three new Jimmy Dean Breakfast Sausage flavors: chorizo, maple and barrel smoked offer those on trend flavors students desire.
Convenience is King
It’s no secret that today’s college student is busy. The hustle and bustle of getting from class to class can leave students feeling like they don’t have time to grab a meal in between classes or study sessions.
Operators can support students by offering grab-n-go options on campus. Many campuses have at least one convenience store, if not more, on-site to help provide the convenience students need. 42% of college and university operators say sales are growing at on-campus c-stores.² Tyson offers trend-forward, on-the-go innovations like our new Tyson® Chicken Chips in addition to familiar, convenient formats like the Hillshire Snacking® Small Plates so your students can treat themselves to their favorite snacks anytime, anywhere.
Operators have learned it’s not so much “if you build it, they will come” today, but rather if you build where the students are, they will come. Placing kiosks, carts or small convenience stores in locations with heavy student foot traffic can be effective in growing sales and keeping students fueled and satisfied.
Partner with Tyson Foodservice
We are excited to see how campuses evolve their foodservice offerings this year, and we look forward to providing solutions for some of the challenges they face. For more information about the Tyson products featured at NACUFS 2019 or how Tyson can help with your campus’ needs, contact your Tyson Foodservice Representative, Broker Specialist, Distributor Sales Representative or visit tysonfoodservice.com.
¹2019 Technomic, Inc., College & University Consumer Trend Report
²2019 Datassentials Foodbytes: College & University Keynote Sneak Peek