Pizza consumption is on the rise, with more than 40% of consumers now eating pizza at least once a week, compared to a quarter of consumers (26%) two years ago, according to a new report from Technomic.
In its new “Pizza Consumer Trend Report”, the market research organization claims that the increase in consumption reflects an increase in innovative and gourmet pizza toppings and ingredients, as well as cost incentives. ‘Authenticity’ and regional call-outs are also growing trends, with Neapolitan, Sicilian and other regional specialties gaining in popularity, the researcher said.
Technomic executive vice president Darren Tristano said in a statement: “Consumers increasingly view pizza as the 'go-to' food when they don’t feel like cooking. Operators can emphasize convenience in their marketing message, positioning pizza as an easy, convenient and affordable meal solution that will appeal to an entire group or family. It's a message that resonates with many customers.”
While the most popular place to purchase pizza is limited service restaurants, 49% of consumers buy pizza from a grocery store at least once a month, the report said. Nearly three-quarters (71%) of consumers buy pizza at limited service restaurants each month.
Among top growth opportunities are meat combination varieties, calzone-style stuffed pizzas and vegetarian pizzas, it said, while the most popular protein topping depends on the outlet. At full-service restaurants, chicken comes out top, but is only the third most common protein at limited service restaurants.