The food we eat within the workplace

We are welcoming in the New Year and looking forward to preparing food for all the workers coming back from their well-deserved breaks. With Veganuary starting and the “new year, new me” mindset, we are taking a look at last year’s eating habits and looking into the trends that will be facing us throughout 2020.  As a caterer that serves a wide variety of workers from all different workplaces around the UK, we tend to see a lot of diversity in the food that is regularly purchased from our cafés and restaurants. We looked into the food served around the 20+ venues we cater for and were surprised to see the difference in food trends based on workplace and location.

Typically you’ll find on the menu a selection of sandwiches, rolls and paninis with an array of fillings to choose from. You will also find the usual snacks such as crisps, cakes, pastries and chocolates. However, we are starting to see a big push towards vegetarian and vegan options for people who want to cut meat out of their diet and eat more plant-based foods, thereby living a healthier, more sustainable lifestyle. Many of our cafés and restaurants are adapting their menus in order to give vegetarians and vegans a better choice for their meals and snacks. On top of the food being served, we also offer a wide selection of beverages throughout the day, from hot drinks including teas, coffees and hot chocolates, to bottled Life water, fruit juices and some bottled fizzy drinks.

Desk-based jobs

Often our sites in workplaces where the customers are desk-based is busy at two points of the day; in the morning with workers grabbing their morning coffee and roll, and lunchtime where workers are buying their sandwiches, salads or hot meals. We have seen an increase in the demand for salads, vegetarian and vegan options within these workplaces. Many office workers are adopting a healthier diet in order to accompany sitting down at a desk for long periods of time without exercise. The café manager at Exertis stated, “We often find customers asking to see the vegetarian and vegan options, as well as creating their own salad bowls and sandwiches. They like to make sure they know what they are eating so they can avoid certain foods that don’t fit their diets. We have seen a small decrease in the interest for cakes and chocolates, however I feel everyone needs their daily treat.” We have also seen the workers adopt a “four-day diet” often opting for a less healthy meal on a Friday such as a burger and chips or a jacket potato. These workers need to maintain focus, especially when looking at a computer screen all day; this is why it is good for them to eat lighter, healthier lunches focusing on superfoods, vegetables and lean meats.

On the go jobs

Some of our sites consist of those where the employees are on the go all the time, often coming in at various times throughout the day to grab a bite to eat or a cup of coffee. These workers tend to be in a rush as they only have a small amount of time to eat before they need to be up and on the go again. At these sites we see a higher demand for quicker food options, such as pastries and sausage/bacon rolls. These tend to fill up the customer better as they are high in carbohydrates and take longer to digest. These foods can also be eaten on the go and do not require you to sit down to eat. Speaking to one of our employees at Go-Ahead, they said, “Many of the workers we serve are in a rush as they need to be back on the road.  We therefore tend to sell more sandwiches and rolls because they can be prepared quickly and can be taken off site if the customer does not have time to eat in the café.” These workers need food that will keep them energised for a long period of time, allowing them to stay focused and not become fatigued.

Overall, we found that our sites differentiate in their demands, depending on the type of job the customer is doing. We aim to improve our menus further throughout the year and continue to offer our customers a wider variety of food which fulfils their needs.

Dayer’s are a committed workplace caterer with over 20 permanent on-site cafés and restaurants throughout the UK, including Basingstoke, London, Portsmouth and Reading. We provide a wide range of breakfast and lunchtime meals and snacks for the working day. From breakfast rolls and coffees to salads, sandwiches and hot meals, we make sure all of our customers are able to have something from our menu. We have also added a variety of vegetarian items to our menus allowing those who do not eat meat, or want to reduce the amount of meat they are eating, to have a selection of food to choose from. Customers also have the ability to make our sandwiches and salads vegan. We also cater for events with the ability to do buffet services.

Thank you for reading our blog on the food we eat within the workplace. To find out more on our workplace catering services, please click here. To see a sample menu of the food we offer, please click here.

< Back to blog