Top Food Trends in Catering for 2024


In the ever-evolving landscape of the hospitality industry, staying ahead of trends is crucial. At Clifford Wallace Agency, we’ve collaborated with industry experts to identify the key food trends catering to the changing needs of consumers and businesses alike for 2024.

From sustainability to tech-driven solutions, let’s delve into the trends that are set to shape the future of catering.

Studies also indicate strong consumer signals of a need for social experiences and festivities; sport viewing; holiday gatherings; micro-events, and so on.


1) Year-Round Consistency in Catering Orders

Most caterers experience a large boost in business during the holidays, particularly during the summer. However, some smaller catering firms aren’t as busy outside of holidays.

Prepared home-delivered foods were profitable during pandemic times, thus caterers are very interested in expanding this portion of their business to encourage year-round consistency. This is a food trend catering to the need for stability in the industry.


2) Sustainability: A Key Food Trend in Catering for 2024

Sustainability is more than just a buzzword; it’s a food trend catering to a growing consumer demand for environmentally responsible practices. As climate change continues to be a pressing issue, caterers are adopting sustainable practices like farm-to-table offerings, zero-waste initiatives, and locally-sourced ingredients.


3) Expanding Menu Variety

Caterers have long been offering vegetarian, gluten, and dairy-free options. They are now making a concerted effort to go above and beyond, with a plethora of ideas around organic, heart-healthy, and plant-based menus.

They often use unbeatable recipes like the well-known ‘Aussie burger’. This is another food trend catering to diverse dietary needs.


4) The Rise of Plant-Based Options

Health-conscious consumers are driving another significant food trend catering to a shift in dietary preferences: the rise of plant-based options.

Caterers are now offering a variety of plant-based options, from appetizers to main courses, to meet this growing demand.


5) Competing with Restaurants for Take-Home Orders

Caterers entered this market when take-home became the most popular type of restaurant order in 2020, and that hasn’t changed. They regard their prepared dishes as a viable alternative to traditional restaurant fare and are starting to market them as such.

This trend is a food trend catering to the shift in consumer behavior.


6) Increasing Focus on Catering Delivery

Caterers and their catering assistant must maintain a consistent rate of meal delivery.

The third-party delivery providers they previously relied on may be either not equipped to manage these larger shipments or experiencing a delivery workforce shortage.

They must focus on catering delivery if they are to compete with restaurants. Those that are capable of doing so will be the ones who lead the charge in this food trend catering to logistical needs.


7) Real-Time Order Tracking

Real-time order tracking is commonly provided by restaurants and meal-ordering apps, and caterers may soon follow.

This enhances the customer experience and will give a competitive edge when competing with restaurants and meal delivery apps.


8) Increase Catering Brand Visibility

These trends will also increase brand awareness and allow them to extend their event business even further. Increasing client numbers, and spending, through deliveries, will result in a better reputation and more demand for event catering throughout the year.


9) Conclusion

As we look forward to 2024, these are the food trends catering to consumer preferences and industry advancements that are set to redefine the catering landscape.

Whether you’re a caterer looking to innovate or a consumer seeking the best in food experiences, understanding these trends is key to staying ahead in the game.

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In the spirit of reconciliation Clifford Wallace Agency acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of country throughout Australia and their connections to land, sea and community. We pay our respect to their Elders past and present and extend that respect to all Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples today.