Canadian Consumers are Expanding their Definition of Dessert, Finds New Technomic Study

CHICAGO, Nov. 20, 2013 /CNW/ - The latest research from Technomic finds that dessert occasions are evolving in the Canadian marketplace as today's consumers loosen up their definition of "dessert" along with their willingness to eat it.

It's no surprise that most Canadian consumers prefer typical, classic dessert offerings like cake and cookies, but they're also considering an array of nontraditional items—such as coffee, adult beverages and even breakfast items like waffles and pancakes—as appealing dessert options. And they're eating desserts as snacks and as meal replacements, rather than simply as after-dinner treats.

[View larger INFOGRAPHIC: Spotlight on Canadian Desserts]

"Consumers are no longer waiting to enjoy dessert after a meal; instead, they're reaching for easily accessible, handheld and portable treats at just about any time of day," says Darren Tristano, Executive Vice President of Technomic, Inc. "To satisfy the changing needs of these dessert consumers, operators should promote greater variety in terms of affordability, flavour uniqueness and portion size in order to meet a wider range of consumer expectations and preferences."

To help foodservice executives understand consumers' latest behaviours, preferences and attitudes regarding dessert, Technomic has published its Canadian Dessert Consumer Trend Report. Interesting findings include:

  • Consumers cite affordability, quality and cravings as the primary considerations when deciding to purchase dessert, with affordability trumping cravings as a purchase driver.
  • Emotions play a key role in dessert occasions: most consumers say they are more likely to eat dessert when they want to treat or reward themselves (72 percent) or are feeling happy (52 percent). Additionally, 36 percent are driven by a feeling of nostalgia for desserts.
  • Dessert occasions are also influenced by the dining party: 42 percent of full-service restaurant desserts and 31 percent of limited-service restaurant desserts are shared.

Technomic's Canadian Dessert Consumer Trend Report provides comprehensive research on the latest menu and consumer trends for these offerings, organized into four major sections:

Menu Insights—uses Technomic's exclusive MenuMonitor data to track year-over-year development of dessert on the menu at restaurant chains in Canada's Top 250 segment.

Consumer Insights—analyzes consumer preferences and attitudes toward dessert, based on year-over-year findings from a nationally representative survey of 1,000 Canadian consumers.

Outlook: Trends to Watch—explores emerging menu, concept and consumer trends that are poised to impact how restaurant operators promote dessert in the future.

Profiles—appendices feature in-depth concept and menu-positioning profiles for 10 trend-setting restaurant brands featuring menus that are positioned around innovative desserts.

Technomic publishes a complete library of consumer trend reports. To learn more, please visit or contact one of the individuals listed below. For Technomic updates, please follow us on Twitter, LinkedIn or our blog.


Press Inquiries: Darren Tristano, 312-506-3850, or

Purchasing Details: Patrick Noone, 312-506-3852, or

Report Details: Kelly Weikel, 312-506-3830, or

About Technomic

Technomic provides clients with the facts, insights and consulting support they need to enhance their business strategies, decisions and results. Its services include numerous publications and digital products, as well as proprietary studies and ongoing research on all aspects of the food industry.


SOURCE: Technomic, Inc.

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