The changing preferences of consumers drive the foodservice industry. Ingredients and menu items that were popular one year may not be the next.
As a food and beverage manager, whenever you find yourself with some downtime, try reading any of these 26 blogs and digital magazines to stay on top of such industry changes.
Aggregating food and hospitality news from around the world, Grub Street has a mix of opinion pieces, news, reviews and more. Although based in New York, many stories focus on nationwide chains and restaurants.
Food Marketing Institute (FMI)
FMI spreads awareness and education about the importance of food safety. The organization works with wholesale companies, food retailers and more to cover some 14,000 pharmacies and 26,000 food stores. Food and beverage managers can review the latest news in food safety, government relations, consumer affairs and food research here.
The Restaurant Group (TRG)
A hospitality consulting company, TRG was founded in 2010 to assist new and established restaurants. Its writers have some interesting ideas on which foodservice trends will be big in 2016: They predict consumers will gravitate toward comfort food, dishes with more seasoning and environmentally friendly menu items.
O’Dell Restaurant Consulting
Brandon O’Dell founded O’Dell Restaurant Consulting in 2001. As an expert in the industry, he often writes about concept strategy consulting, marketing and operations. If you’re concerned about the longevity of your establishment, don’t miss his multiple posts about restaurant failure.
Connect with other caterers through the vast online network that is Catersource. As you swap techniques with professionals and register for catering expos and events near you, you can also read a wealth of articles on the site’s blog. Pick up a new recipe or two or learn a few new ways to organize a buffet station.
Real Time Ordering (RTO)
RTO serves quick-service and fast-food restaurants and similar establishments. The company’s blog is a useful read for food and beverage managers who are considering introducing online ordering to their restaurant. There’s even a post on how to keep customers’ financial information secure.
FoodServiceWarehouse (FSW) sells culinary tools, equipment and other items. The FSW Season’d blog is chock full of posts on food trends and operations tips that would be useful for anyone in concessions, catering, bars and bakeries. There are foodservice buying guides you can refer back to when dealing with disposables, buying a pizza oven, frying food, and using an ice machine or commercial refrigeration.
Digital marketing agency Social Hospitality offers management tips for event planners; hotel and travel professionals; and restaurant owners, food managers, food truck owners and beverage managers. Its piece from mid-January on 10 ways restaurant owners can reach more customers makes a great starting point.
Once a Michelin-rated chef and now a restaurant consultant, Kitchen CUT founder John Wood knows his stuff. If you’re in the middle of revamping your menu, bookmark his posts on menu-writing and how to avoid grammatical and spelling mistakes.
The Back Burner
The Back Burner blog by eTundra, a restaurant supply company, is on top of the latest cooking products and equipment. Although somewhat Colorado-centric, the posts about Denver Restaurant Week are a compelling read for any restaurant owner preparing for a busy season. With instructional videos (like how to change a restaurant’s water filter), marketing tips and giveaways, this is a bountiful resource.
Le Cordon Bleu
As a renowned culinary school, Le Cordon Bleu‘s posts are written for chefs. If you’re adjusting your menu with gluten-free options, the experts here clue you in on which ingredients you should use so your dishes still shine. And as new food trends emerge, these are also discussed.
If you’re redoing your restaurant logo, don’t miss the thought-provoking eateria post that explains how customers unconsciously react to certain colors. There’s also a convincing argument from this restaurant consulting company about why you should consider getting a delivery driver or two for your restaurant.
Hotel F&B Magazine
Since 2002, Hotel F&B Magazine has offered foodservice professionals working in casinos, resorts and hotels the latest trends in these fields. The publication prints industry special reports regularly to “help you innovate and stay ahead of the competition.” Just some of the topics these reports have tackled include the emergence of upscale pub food, dessert buffet displays, proteins from poultry and meat and using Plugra European-style butter in desserts.
Read Tabletop Journal to learn why #TabletopMatters. This journal covers all aspects of tabletop foodservice, from cafes to restaurants to bars to everything in between. Get introduced to the newest key players in barware with detailed interviews or read about the importance of temperature when serving beer.
FoodService Director Magazine
Intended for foodservice operators outside of the commercial sector, FoodService Director Magazine publishes articles about industry research, menu development, emerging trends, managing hospitality businesses and industry news. The FSD of the Month introduces a key player in food and drinks, too. And with interviews, there is plenty of insight here for you to glean.
Whether you own a landmark restaurant, a national chain, a small café or a fine dining restaurant, you’re in good company, as FSR Magazine readers include mixologists, beverage managers, C-level executives, senior executives, chefs and operators. Up until 2012, the publication was called Restaurant Manager. After the name change, the magazine branched out to encompass broader topics such as food safety, healthy eating, restaurant financing and more.
Since 1928, Food Engineering has informed subscribers about emerging trends in material automation, material handling, food plant operations, food safety, packaging, food processing and more. With plant case studies, showcases of new products, plant histories, updates on new technology and reports, this monthly magazine is a useful glimpse into the more technical side of food production.
Food Safety Magazine
Established in 1995, Food Safety Magazine publishes “science-based solutions” for restaurant owners, distributors and managers. Once known as Food Testing & Analysis, this publication, which switched names in 2001, writes about all aspects of food safety, like sanitation, regulations, process control, risk assessments, cleanliness and contamination control.
One of the oldest magazines of its kind (it’s been printed since 1882), Beverage World breaks news in the world of drinks. After you’ve finished your first issue, keep reading on the website, where you can find white papers, webcasts, videos, event news and contact information for beverage marketers, importers and beer brewers.
For ideas on how to reformat your menu or appeal to more customers with your food, Packaging Strategies is a handy read. Grab your tablet to check out studies, news of expos and other events, packaging material reviews, vertical market news (for producers of snack foods, pet food, confections and more) and machinery reviews.
Quality Assurance & Food Safety Magazine
To stay up-to-date on safety issues, read Quality Assurance & Food Safety Magazine, which covers everything from pathogen detection to regulations. The magazine’s website supplements this material with videos, case studies, news, event posts and information about recent food recalls.
Another drinks-exclusive publication is Beverage Industry, which first appeared on newsstands in 1946. As beverage manufacturing evolves, the magazine reports on the changes while peppering in articles about marketing, operation plants, new products and packaging equipment. No matter what drinks you serve at your restaurant, you won’t miss an emerging trend when you read this magazine.
Food Logistics Magazine
With 10 dense annual issues, Food Logistics Magazine covers “the global supply chain from farm to fork.” Managers, directors, vice presidents, executives at distribution centers and food warehouse workers are some of the 24,000-plus subscribers. The magazine’s features dig deep into food security, cold chains, evolving food technology and software, sustainability, and food transportation.
Food Quality & Safety Magazine
Another publication that keeps you abreast of food sanitation issues is Food Quality & Safety Magazine. Having won awards from ASBPE, Folio Ozzie and APEX for article quality, this publication keeps hospitality stakeholders ahead of the curve when it comes to food research and safety.
PMQ Pizza Magazine
PMQ Pizza Magazine is dedicated exclusively to pizza and has been since it was first published in 1997. If you own a pizzeria, or plan to, you can learn more about new products in pizza-making tech and equipment, ingredients and recipes for yummier pies, and business tactics covering all aspects of pizzeria ownership.
Food & Beverage Magazine
As one of the most popular F&B magazines, with a history dating back almost 20 years, Food & Beverage Magazine has had Kerry Simon, Emeril Lagasse, Mario Batali, Wolfgang Puck and Bobby Flay on its advisory board. Monthly publications often feature recipes, beverage news, franchise reviews and interviews with emerging chefs.