Appetite for diversity and delight

“Tell me what you eat, and I will tell you who you are,” said Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin, the famed French gastronome.

A new ‘arms race’ in hospitality is emerging as venues raise the stakes on their food and beverage offerings. Diversity and inclusion are prominent influencers in this landscape.

Through our extensive hospitality network, Paynter Dixon is working with clients at the forefront of creativity and innovation.

Embracing the melting pot

1 in 4 Australians were born overseas.

1 in 2 have an overseas parent.

We are home to the world’s oldest continuous culture, with Australians identifying with more than 270 ancestries.

Customer bases have diversified with multiculturism, broadening our collective palette in the process. While time-honoured staples remain popular, expectations among new and traditional patrons are higher than ever. Progressive menus are in step with lifestyles, cultural influences and religious traditions.

The menu as your brand

76% of Australian consumers are seeking brands with values that align with their own.

Whilst it seems a new craft beer hits the market every second week, the food menu is more than ‘just food’. It has become a reflection of the venue’s brand and core values.

As such, consumers are seeking to connect with brands and organisations that reflect their own point of view and sense of identity – whether knowingly or on a subliminal level. A diverse menu sends a message of inclusion.

Surprise me!

69% of millennials take a photo or video of their food.

It takes 0.05 seconds to form an impression.

Millennials (born 1980 – 1994) and Gen Z (1995 – 2009) have shifted the dial on customer satisfaction, seeking personalised experiences and the element of surprise.

Social media has also given rise to ‘Instagrammable’ places and food – a trend which began with influencers and bloggers, but has since become a common ritual.

Presentation matters, especially when your whole business can be judged by a single image and a handful of comments in a split second.

2.5 million vegans and vegetarians in Australia.

Plant-based diets have increased by 50% in the last decade. 

The percentage of Australians (12%) on vegan or vegetarian diets is rising. What’s more, ABS data shows that consumption of dairy and meat substitutes grew by 14% per person in 2021.

In other words, we are all eating more plant-based foods. Motivating factors can include personal health, or in the age of climate change, the desire to reduce greenhouses gases.

Psychology on the side

To keep pace with expectations, venues are rotating their menus at an ever-increasing rate. Table settings and the interior design and colour palette of the venue can all play subtle but important factors.

Commitment to authenticity

Masterchef and other hugely popular television shows have increased literacy, expectations, and coverage of diverse cuisine. Authenticity is paramount, from the ingredients on the plate, to the skilled chefs and wait staff associated with the lifestyle, ethnicity or culture of the food.

To learn more on how Paynter Dixon can help your business with the design and construction of innovative hospitality venues, contact:

Andrew Neagle, Strategic Development Lead – Hospitality

Sources: Australian Human Rights Commission, Roy Morgan Research, Australian Bureau of Statistics, Toluna.

Thought Provoker: Appetite for diversity and delight