Senior living providers are reworking their dining programs to include wellness-focused menus, cost-efficient kitchen methods and even food trucks.
And these are just a few of the recent forward-thinking ideas providers have shared with Senior Housing News. With half of this year behind us, we thought it would be worthwhile to revisit some of these dining trends in an attempt to see what lies ahead in senior living dining.
Below are quotes from industry experts who spoke with SHN at our annual DISHED event back in April and in subsequent reporting. Click the links to learn about where eating and drinking in senior housing is headed.
“Within the next five years, you will see a very big push with technology, especially in terms of the marketplace or the grab-and-go-concept similar to what Amazon Go is doing.” — Matt Schuler, directory of culinary for SCOPOS Hospitality Group
“We’ve been piloting different freshly squeezed juices that we make in the back of the kitchen. Providing these juice shots is a great way to add nutrition to someone who might otherwise have had a burger today.” — Darin Leonardson, Blake Management Group’s vice president of culinary operations
“We may have family-style dining one day, a more formal dinner the next. We’re rolling out different concepts for different days.” — Gottfried Ernst, vice president of hospitality for senior housing communities at Green Courte Partners
“If you’ve saved [money], put it back in. Get a better cut of prime rib. Get some lobster if you can. Have fun with it. Because it’s the resident’s money and we want to create resident happiness.” — Arnold Alejandrino, regional culinary director at Elder Care Alliance
“I think that what you’re seeing … starting to creep into the senior housing venue is kind of the slow food movement, and that kind of encompasses everything from organic, sustainable, purchasing local.” — Marjan Kodric, a vice president of dining operations with Brookdale Senior Living (NYSE: BKD)
“Any retail [restaurant] plan needs to be budgeted as a retail store.” — LIVGenerations Vice President of Dining Services Cara Baldwin
“The adult nutrition category, we don’t believe, is thinking progressively about adults that are living in senior living communities. Older adults are seeking daily health and wellness.” — Brent Taylor, co-founder of Beyond Meat and Perennial
“We are going to have to provide that [dining-related] data in order to be viable, marketplace-wise. And we don’t have a whole lot of that data right now. We have some of it. But I think it’s going to be a non-negotiable down the road.” — Beth Cooper, senior hospitality manager of Morrison Community Living