At the beginning of every year, millions of people set intentions to better themselves, and many of their resolutions revolve around health and wellness. Of course, food plays a crucial part in health, so it’s no surprise that many resolutions end up being specific to food. This year, Nextbite, a virtual restaurant company, conducted a survey to understand what exactly customers want when it comes to delivery food and their diet goals.
The company surveyed 1,046 US consumers aged 13-54 years old in December 2021. One key takeaway from the survey was that 49 percent of the consumers plan on ordering healthier delivery food in 2022. Of these consumers, 59 percent of them order food for delivery at least once a month or more, while 41 percent plan on ordering more food for delivery this year.
Eating healthier is not a surprising resolution, as it is one that often makes it in the top three most common resolutions. In the survey, 49 percent reported that they desired to eat healthier this year, and this was a top goal of consumers aged 18-34 years old. Eating healthier does not necessarily mean following a specific diet; only 6 percent of consumers said they planned on trying to follow a trend diet like Whole360 or keto.
In 2020 and 2021, we turned to comfort food to deal with the emotional and mental impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. Yelp gathered up data in 2020 to determine what the most popular delivery items in different states were during the COVID-19 pandemic and created the map above. As you can see, many of the items, such as donuts, pizza, nachos, Belgian fries, and hot wings, would not be classified as health foods. According to DoorDash, the top two popular items ordered in 2020 were chicken sandwiches with a side of fries and mac and cheese.
Often reliant on quick-service chains, delivery food is traditionally viewed as unhealthy. However, by adding fresh and nutritious food dishes to delivery menus, restaurants, and ghost kitchens can change that perception while encouraging health-motivated customers to keep ordering food for delivery.
February is the month where upwards of 80 percent of New Year’s resolutions fail. Consumers may want to commit to vegan grain bowls and green smoothies now, but later this year, revert back to ordering hot chicken wings and deep-dish pizza. Despite the surge in the new COVID-19 variant at the moment, 2022 looks promising due to the fact children are returning back to school, adults are working in-person, and events are being held again. The way 2022 plays out may be a determining factor if consumers turn back to comfort food or stick to wholesome options.