Summer Celebrations Mean Indulging When Dining Out


With June in full swing and summer now ahead of us, the season of al fresco dining and family celebrations has arrived! Whether it’s a graduation or family reunion, or just enjoying the longer days and the excuse to hold a family get-together, more people are looking to indulge their summer cravings.

In fact, as we saw in our new All About Dining Out: What’s on Trend report, indulging taste buds is the top reason more than a third (37%) of people go out to eat. People want to find something new and flavorful on the menu that they may not get at home. According to Mintel’s Dining Out Dayparts report, more than half of consumers (51%) said they dine out for an indulgent meal, and a third (32%) of diners say treating or rewarding themselves is a main motivator for eating out, according to Datassential’s Chain Analyzer.

Often, those gatherings are a chance to spend time with family. More than 80% of diners with children living in their home, and 71% of diners without children living in their home cite spending time with family as a top reason to eat out. They may not even need a reason to celebrate (other than being together) when going out for a meal.

Foodservice owners and operators can indulge these summer cravings by marketing preparations, cuts and dish names that highlight taste and flavor. Call out savory preparations on your menu using phrases like “barbecued” or “grilled.” Consider sharable options the whole family will enjoy. Our research also shows families seek out sharable portions or multi-dish meals (like pick two or pick three).

Packers can help their operator partners stay ahead of the summer craving season by providing new cuts that are a fit for popular summer dishes, like grilled tenderloin or carnitas. Multicultural dishes like street tacos are also popular this season as food trucks hit the road. Consider prepared options for fast casual, quick service and c-store customers, too, to make it easy to integrate craveable dishes all summer long.

We have an opportunity to make pork a centerpiece of summertime celebrations. With tasty cuts, flavorful dishes and careful marketing, diners will be craving pork all summer long.

How do you see pork fulfilling diners’ cravings? Are there opportunities the industry is missing? Send me an email with your ideas on pork’s role in indulgent dining occasions!

Angie Krieger

Angie Krieger

Assistant Vice President, Channel Outreach

National Pork Board Cell: 319-594-4000