Industry News

Top 10: Chipotle’s smoked brisket, holiday candy, fried chicken popularity

SmartBrief’s food and beverage readers were interested in Chipotle’s latest pilot for a new menu offering this week. The chain’s participating locations in Cincinnati and Sacramento, Calif., are selling smoked brisket, which can be used as a limited-time meat option for all of Chipotle’s entrees.

In other foodservice news, market research firm Dataessential reports roughly 45% of restaurants in the US feature a fried chicken menu item, which is prompting the industry to find creative, inventive recipes to stand out from the crowd. Dataessential also forecasts these chicken offerings will continue to be popular with that current restaurant figure likely to increase by 7% over the next four years.

The No. 2 spot on this week’s list was taken by US legislators’ proposal of a $908 billion stimulus package as the coronavirus pandemic continues. However, industry groups have criticized the bill because it does not include the $120 billion RESTAURANTS Act -- which would allocate funds for foodservice businesses -- that was contained in a previous version of the legislation by the House. 

This week’s most-clicked headline was a story about the popular holiday candy products in each state. The results come from a survey conducted by The Candy Store, and peppermint bark, Hershey Kisses, and chocolate Santas emerged as some of the top favorites.

More consumer packaged goods news also proved popular this week with two top-ranked stories featuring insights about CPG packaging innovations. Hi-Chew and Oreo were among the food and beverage brands recognized by Nielsen’s design awards for their successful packaging redesigns, and a Conagra exec shared how its Swiss Miss brand’s new cube containers help the CPG manufacturer boost efficiency and cut its carbon footprint.

Another headline that drew in readers this week was Unilever’s announcement that the CPG company’s New Zealand offices will be testing out working for four days a week, rather than the typical five days, starting next week for 12 months.

Check out the complete list of this week’s top 10 most-clicked stories in SmartBrief's food and beverage briefs:

  1. What is the top holiday candy in each state?
  2. Latest relief bill doesn't include RESTAURANTS Act
  3. Hi-Chew, others win packaging awards from Nielsen
  4. Fox Restaurant Concepts plans 2 takeout-only eateries
  5. Chefs tap into culinary possibilities of fried chicken
  6. Hormel CEO: New plants, e-commerce to drive 2021 growth
  7. Unilever to trial four-day work week in New Zealand for one year
  8. Breakfast sausage innovation sizzles with meal prep boost
  9. Chipotle puts smoked brisket on the menu in 2 markets
  10. Why Conagra pivoted from Swiss Miss canisters to cubes

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