Grubhub shares insights on what food the US is craving
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Grubhub shares insights on what food the US is craving

Despite competitors like DoorDash, Postmates, and Uber Eats, Grubhub is still the undisputed king of the online food order and delivery service. It has an incredible 95,000 restaurant partners, and makes almost a billion dollars-worth of orders every quarter. So when you’re looking for information over what takeaway orders consumers are choosing, Grubhub is the place to go. Thankfully for investors with an interest in the market, the company releases a Year in Food report annually – and 2018’s has just been published.

Over the course of the year to date, Grubhub’s share price has appreciated by 15%

graph 13 grub

Source: Yahoo Finance

Grubhub’s report is based on “a demographically representative sample of 1,927 U.S. consumers between the ages of 18 and 54” who have ordered food at some point in the last three months. It’s “based on trends gathered from millions of orders on the Grubhub platform and the results of a commissioned survey performed by a third-party” and any changes are year on year, expressed as a percentage. It’s probably the single most insightful piece of reporting available when it comes to a real-time understanding of what people are ordering around the nation.

This year, the report made a few things very clear: first of all, consumers are flocking to ‘fast-casual’ dining styles. Fast-casual is a recent term which describes food that is fast (like fast food) but better quality (like casual dining). The most popular cuisine in this area tends to be Mediterranean food, and you’re not likely to find burgers and fries on the menu (well, you might find a gourmet vegan burger with pommes pont neuf if you look hard enough). In 2018, fast casual was overwhelmingly the preference for food orders, with 40% of respondents picking it as their chosen option. Consumers picking speed, quality, and convenience… sound familiar?

Other interesting points were that plant-based food continues to increase in popularity but chicken is still probably the most popular food ingredient on the market. Consumers are also getting more experimental, and trying out exotic flavours that include more spice. Perhaps the most important thing to note, however, is this: despite years of growth and heavy investment, the food order and delivery market shows no sign at all that it’s slowing down – in fact, quite the opposite.


Dominion holds Grubhub in its Global Trends Ecommerce Fund.

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