Promoting Healthy Eating Habits Through Office Catering
Catering in NYC is a way of life--it’s part of the pulse of the city that never sleeps. Walk through midtown any weekday and you will invariably see delivery men rolling their food carts through busy sidewalks to deliver trays of salads, sandwiches and desserts to companies big and small. Because corporate catering is such an integrated part of the corporate culture, it responds to trends that are reverberating throughout this great metropolis.
Case in point – healthy eating habits in the office. In the days of old, deli style sandwiches piled high and with a simple mustard or mayo was the norm. People were happy with a classic potato, pasta or coleslaw salad and that was that. Fast forward to 2015 and boy have things changed. We now have a very sophisticated corporate demographic where kale is the new mesclun.
Office Catering Trends: Kale and Whole Grains
Promoting healthy eating habits in the office is the trend – clients want quality, variety, sophisticated flavors and textures that compliment one an another. As kale ramped up in popularity in restaurants, it was also finding its way into the offices of architects, media agencies, tech companies and law firms. Mesclun salad and balsamic? No thank you! Deb’s signature kale salad with dates, parmesan, almonds and a light citrus vinaigrette is now the go to healthy salad. Penne with roasted tomatoes? Nope! Healthy whole grains are the latest catering trend. Freekeh with dried blueberries, shredded kale, pomegranate seeds and pistachio dust is what our clients crave. Freekeh, like bulgur wheat, is a whole grain or one of the “ancient grains” and a health trend that is very popular amongst vegetarians and vegans. Deb’s menu often showcases whole grains such as freekeh, bulgur, wheat berries, quinoa, barley and buckwheat.
Know Your Employees' Eating Preferences
Promoting healthy eating habits in the office is driven by the type of person who is eating. Vegan, vegetarian and gluten-free are now commonly-used classifications and Deb’s Catering has a diverse and rotating menu to please people craving both classic comfort food and those in search of artisanal specialties. The bulk of Deb’s Catering's client base is interested in promoting healthy habits to both employees that seek them and introducing employees that resist. We’ve been to many an office where a skeptical meat-eater tried our red quinoa with roasted butternut squash, scallions, mint, parsley and coconut only to be amazed that a food this healthy could be so delicious. Don’t knock it till you’ve tried it.
Make-Your-Own Catering Options
While composed salads and entrees are popular, we have found that the “Make Your Own” catering bars are also popular. They allow people to customize their plate and truly tailor their food choices to match their eating profiles. Make-your-own oatmeal bar, omelet bar, salad bar, baked potato bar and smoothie bar are all wildly popular catering trends.
Healthy toppings adorn these buffets and create a buzz when employees can luxuriate in choices from chia, hemp and flax seeds to sweet potatoes and whey protein. Don’t underestimate the power of protein!
One Last Thought
Health and efficiency have a clear relationship in the corporate world--one that employers continually want to promote through their catering and food choices. Healthy employees take fewer sick days and are more productive at the office. Promoting healthy eating at board meetings, corporate events and after-hours cocktail parties is the wave of now.