Cooking oils have been used in the restaurant industry for years, and most – if not all – food establishments have plenty of uses for different kinds of cooking oil. Cooking oil has a list of extensive uses, whether it’s for grilling, frying, sautéing, for salad dressings, for dips, and more. And nowadays, with the increased consciousness for healthier food and ingredients, more consumers are looking for restaurants which can give them healthier choices when it comes to cooking oil. So, what are the trends in the fast food sector regarding the use of healthier oils? Let’s find out.
What consumers want
Even if a consumer decides to go for fast food, he or she has a new preference for healthier ingredients. According to market research firms, more consumers are looking for restaurants which can provide them with better food – food that doesn’t have preservatives (or at least fewer than the norm), food that is clean and fresh, and better cooking oils as well.
The changes are being facilitated by younger consumers. Millennials have become increasingly picky about the food they eat, and the same is true for the so-called ‘generation Z’. These younger consumers are savvier when it comes to ingredients, and they are more aware of the effect of different ingredients on their health and wellbeing.
What about cooking oils?
In recent years, more restaurants have shifted to using oils which are lower in trans-fats. Previously, cooking oils such as partially-hydrogenated cooking oils were heavily used, especially since they had a good shelf-life. But these oils have a lot of trans-fats, which can increase the level of bad cholesterol.
Today, the list of oils in restaurants which are partially-hydrogenated has shrunk. More restaurants are now using different oils, such as canola oil, soybean oil, olive oil, and oil derived from seeds and nuts. Most of these oils are used for frying, although fried food consumption has decreased as well.
But even if the taste for fried food will never completely wane, food establishments are looking at ways to use better oils – higher quality oils which have a low saturated fat content. Olive oil is still considered one of the healthiest oils, although it is not used for frying – it’s used mostly for sautéing, for salads, and the like. Diners often think of restaurants in a more positive light when the restaurant uses olive oil extensively. The increased use of healthy oils such as olive oil can be just what your customers are looking for – and if you want to lower your expenses for olive oil, it’s better to buy bulk olive oil. This is especially true if you use a lot of olive oil for grilling, sauces, and even dough.