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CHICAGO — Technomic Information Services has launched its new Hispanic Foodservice Report, which canvases the Hispanic foodservice market and provides detailed reporting on consumer behaviors and preferences, as well as current and future implications to restaurant operators.
 
Census Bureau data places Hispanics at roughly 44 million — nearly 15 percent of the U.S. population — making the U.S. the third-largest concentration of Hispanics in the world, after Mexico and Colombia.
 
"The purchasing power of Hispanics will exceed $863 billion this year, marking the first time that Hispanics control more disposable income than any other U.S. minority group," said Darren Tristano, Technomic executive vice president. "We see that successful foodservice operators and suppliers will need to keep abreast of what these new consumers will expect on restaurant menus, how frequently they'll dine out and how to best serve them."
 
Using a July 2007 survey of more than 1,000 U.S. Hispanic consumers, key findings include:
  • Mexican is clearly the most-preferred cuisine among Hispanic consumers, as indicated by 58 percent of survey respondents. Italian is a distant second (19 percent), followed by American (11 percent).
  • When ordering Latino-style entrees at full-service restaurants, 58 percent of the respondents said they are more concerned with the general taste of these menu items than their authenticity. Furthermore, 50 percent of Hispanic consumers believe that if a restaurant offers such foods, it also should offer Latino-style beverages.
  • Hispanic consumers are more likely to visit independent restaurants than chains. Among those surveyed, 48 percent had visited full-service independent Mexican restaurants and 34 percent had dined at full-service independent restaurants serving other types of foods.
In addition to detailed reporting on current and future Hispanic restaurant consumers, the new report provides in-depth information and analysis of the broader U.S. Hispanic marketplace for food and examination of numerous Latin American cuisines.
 
The report also provides several appendices detailing the Top 250 chain operators featuring Hispanic cuisines, emerging chains and independents, census bureau and survey demographics, as well as state and regional Hispanic population data and consumer survey data tables.

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