Early birds

Related tags Breakfast

PubChef looks at how breakfast can be an easy win for licensees looking to attract incremental trade As the old saying goes, the early bird catches...

PubChef looks at how breakfast can be an easy win for licensees looking to attract incremental trade

As the old saying goes, the early bird catches the worm — and when it comes to making more money, breakfast

can prove a profitable addition to a licensee's business.

Why just open late if you can open early? Breakfast is simple to produce, easy to manage and ever-growing in popularity.

According to research by foodservice analyst Horizons, pubs are set to serve 12.5 million breakfasts by 2010.

Of course, location is the key thing to consider before introducing a breakfast offer, but for town and city pubs there is certainly untapped potential for pubs to grow their share of the breakfast market. Heinz Foodservice research shows 52% of people have not eaten breakfast out of home in the last three months.

The company has identified four key types of breakfast consumer which licensees could tap into with a breakfast offer.

Research shows out-of-home breakfast consumers are looking to fuel up with cooked breakfasts as part of their daily routine, need a grab 'n' go breakfast option as they often skip breakfast due to lack of time, are looking for healthy options but find preparing a guilt-free breakfast a mean feat, or are looking for a total treat and enjoy occasional indulgence in a real slap-up breakfast.

Heinz Foodservice brand manager Tal Drori says: "A British fry-up is still the favoured out-of-home breakfast, with 56% of people enjoying one, and other cooked options and hot rolls/sandwiches accounting for 15% and 14% of the market respectively.

"However, there is still enormous scope for maximising breakfast potential."

Keith Deary, catering manager for Scottish operator Maclay Inns, said licensees are often unaware of the audience for breakfast on their doorstep.

"Three of our pubs now open at 9am for breakfast. They're all doing well because they fill a gap in the market."

He says the Victoria Café bar, in St Andrews, is a particular success, due to its proximity to the university and student demand. It now serves about 200 breakfasts per session.

"The key is to start by opening an hour

earlier, increase to two and keep assessing the situation," adds Keith. "Breakfast is a powerful niche to break into, if demand exists."

Paul Drye, catering development manager

for St Austell Brewery, which has 31 managed inns, says the keys to attracting customers for breakfast in its area are provenance and loyalty. Customers can be made aware of local products included in each dish, but this won't work for every watering-hole.

The St Austell pubs offering breakfast are those in the tourist areas, as people walk in off the street from an early hour, especially in


Paul says: "The Look Out restaurant bar, at our Pedn-Olva Hotel on West Porthminster Beach, in St Ives, is a good example of how popular breakfast can be.

"Those out in the sticks, however, might struggle to attract the early birds, as some of our inns have discovered."

Using a selection of good quality, well-respected ingredients and products is also key.

Donnie Monro, development chef at McCain Foodservice, says: "Keep profits up and waste down by using ingredients that can be easily found in the kitchen. Simple ingredients such as eggs, cheese and onion are perfect for creating delicious breakfast dishes.

Kellogg's foodservice marketing controller Andy Phillips says licensees shouldn't forget healthier options on their breakfast menus.

He says: "We are a nation obsessed with counting calories and have become more health-conscious than ever. So, if a hot breakfast is all that's on offer, it might put off some customers, which in turn means missing out on an incremental profit opportunity. It's important to get the breakfast balance right - a good hot offering and a varied continental offering."

Offering breakfast options to take away or offering a delivery service are good money-spinners. At the Punch Tavern, in London's Fleet Street, about 50 breakfasts are sold in the pub from 7am to 11am each week, plus 100 as take-aways. The pub also has a coffee stand between 7am and 11am, serving about 200 coffees weekly, and offers a breakfast delivery service for customers within 1km of the pub.

Its breakfast offer includes the Punch fry-up (£7); natural yoghurt with nuts, oats & honey (£3.50); Punch veggie breakfast (£5.50); poached egg & smoked salmon (£5.50); bacon & egg sandwich (£3.50), and thick-cut toast with preserves (£2).

Manager David Pocock says: "Attention to detail is important: provide good quality ingredients, a friendly service, newspapers and a quiet atmosphere.

Hot news

Lincat has launched a high-output, compact conveyor toaster, which can produce up to 340 slices of toast per hour by toasting slices side-by-side. The CT1 is designed to meet the needs of busy commercial kitchens or to produce large volumes of other toasted products, such as crumpets, muffins, burger buns, teacakes, and bagels. It costs £699.

For details visit www.lincat.co.uk or call 01522 875555.

New products

Quick indulgence

Kellogg's Foodservice has launched oat & chocolate chip Nutri-Grain soft oaties.

A combination of wholesome oats, wheat and chocolate chips make this a sweet, moist and chewy snack. The product is foil- wrapped, providing a shelf life of eight months.

For details visit www.kelloggsfoodservice.co.uk or 0800 626066

Continental treats

Bakehouse has launched a Continental pastry selection of croissant, pain raisin and pain chocolat.

The selection has been renamed to reflect changing consumer trends and the fact that these traditional breakfast products are now being enjoyed throughout the day as a coffee accompaniment, a sweet snack, filled for lunch — or, in the case of the all-butter croissant, as a savoury snack.

The selection includes 16 of Bakehouse's all-butter croissants, 10 pains chocolats and 10 pains raisins. The convenient pack doesn't take up too much freezer space and eliminates the need for caterers to buy separate cases. The pastries bake-off from frozen in 18 minutes. No finishing is required as they are pre-glazed.

For details visit www.bakehouse.co.uk or call 0800 234034

Morning service

Burco has developed a breakfast equipment range, including toasters, autofill water boilers, coffee makers and kettles.

The Burco range includes conveyor-belt and commercial slot toasters. Also available are counter-top and wall-mounted autofill water boilers featuring a patented Burco "safety tap".

Coffee products include the pour-and-serve filter coffee maker, a front-of-house coffee solution, and an auto-fill filter-coffee maker. Burco also offers commercial kettles.

For details visit www.burco.co.uk or call 0871 2225118

Menu ideas

Hash brown oval Benedict

Ingredients: Hollandaise sauce; 4 eggs; 4 McCain hash brown ovals; butter; 4 slices of ham or smoked back bacon.

Method: Make Hollandaise and keep warm. Poach eggs and keep warm. Preheat grill and spread hash browns with butter. Place buttered side up under the grill; put ham in pan to warm. Grill until toasted and the ham has heated. Place ham on hash browns, top with eggs, and spoon sauce generously over eggs. Place on a warm serving dish and glaze under the grill. Serve.

Fried breakfast potatoes with pancetta

Ingredients: McCain Purely Potato slices; diced pancetta or back bacon; butter; onion to taste.

Method: Melt butter in frying pan. Add pancetta, then the onion until cooked but not brown. Add the potato slices to the frying pan. Turn often. Cook until light brown. Add salt & pepper to taste.

Croissant sandwiched with bacon and egg

Method: Take a freshly baked Bakehouse

all-butter croissant and split a

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