Pizza is most popular takeout option

January 14 2014

Pizza is the most popular takeout option among North American diners.

This is according to new research from Technomic, which has revealed 80 per cent of people are likely to choose this dish when eating on the go. 

The organization found the next most popular options are fried chicken and Chinese, with 66 per cent and 65 per cent of people enjoying this type of takeout respectively. Some 57 per cent of diners stated they are likely to eat both steak and Italian food on the go.

Technomic found takeout remains popular with consumers, as 51 per cent of the people surveyed said they order this type of food at least once a week. 

When asked what they value most in a takeout meal, some 68 per cent of people said food that tastes just as good as what is served at sit-down restaurants is the most important consideration. A similar amount claimed accurate orders is key, while a convenient location was highlighted by 56 per cent. 

The same number of people said they expect takeout meals to taste just as fresh as other restaurant offerings and 48 per cent value food that is prepared quickly.

Joe Pawlak, senior vice-president at Technomic, stated: "Convenience is key for the takeout customer. They want consistently high-quality, well-packaged meal solutions that can be sourced in truly convenient ways."

"Enhanced amenities and services - from updated delivery and call-ahead services to easy-to-use mobile apps and online ordering platforms - can help provide an edge over competitors and improve takeout and catering sales," he added. 

Technomic found call-ahead services are seen as a key part of the takeout experience. More than two-thirds (69 per cent) of diners at limited-service takeout providers said they would use this service if available, while the figure was 61 per cent for full-service venues.

The organisation's report concluded that takeout provides restaurant operators with an attractive way to boost sales and take advantage of the recovering economy.

It is clear from Technomic's research that takeout and pizza in particular remains very popular with diners. However, the market is highly competitive and operators are continually striving to attract more customers to their venues.

One of the leading chains in this field is Pizza Hut and the company has recently announced it is trialling a new offering in a bid to appeal to more people aged between 20 and 40. 

The company will start selling its pizzas by the slice at two locations in the US - York, Nebraska and Pawtucket, Rhode Island. Its rival Domino's is already offering pizzas this way at certain venues. 

Carrie Walsh, Pizza Hut's chief marketing officer, stated: "We're seeing the trends for quick and ready products."

The pizza slices will cost between US $2 ($2.18) and $3 and take three to four minutes to heat up. Should this new policy prove successful, it would not be a surprise to see it transferred to Pizza Hut's venues across the border in Canada.