Category — Studies

European employees are increasingly keen on finding healthy options in restaurants at lunch time – 2014 barometers’ results

For the third year, the European FOOD barometers were launched in 6 countries. More than 5500 employees and 720 restaurants owners from Belgium, the Czech Republic, France, Italy, Slovakia and Spain, helped to better understand the needs and expectations regarding access to food during the working day in 2014. 

When choosing a restaurant at lunch time, the rapidity of the service is the most important criteria this year, with an important increase from 36% in 2013 up to 41% in 2014, catching-up the results of the first FOOD barometers.  

But the most striking increase of the questionnaires’ return since 2010 concerns healthy options in restaurants. It turns out that European employees stated that it is for them “important” to “very important” that restaurants offer: optional portion sizes, tap water on demand, plenty of vegetables, steamed, grilled or oven-baked foods and wholemeal bread. On the other hand, the importance of big quantities served in restaurants has significantly increased (from 16% in 2013 to 24% in 2014).

This information is not contradictory with a healthy diet: more but healthier food.

From the restaurants’ side, it appears that there was an increase of 25% in the demand for balanced/healthy meals from their customers, while the sales for the same type of meals have increased of 21% over the past 12 months preceding the questionnaire.

Finally, if the knowledge of the staff is reported to be still medium, there are less restaurants’ owner declaring that they are not interested in the subject (2% compared to 4% in 2013 and even 12% in 2010).



In the framework of the programme, a European barometer was launched in order to understand and analyse societal changes and needs of employees and restaurants. In 2014, more than 5500 employees and 720 restaurants coming from six Member States answered the questionnaires.

décembre 11, 2014   No Comments

Optional meal portions can help fight obesity

Larger portions not only contain more energy but encourage people to eat more and to make a habit of it.

The scientific community seems to be consensual on the importance of regulating food portion in weight management: research suggests that the continued exposure to large meal portion sizes might lead to weight increase over the time; on the other hand, a different set of studies have been relating loss of weight with the use of graduated portion sizes that allow controlling the amount of food eaten at each meal.

Most participating countries in FOOD programme follow recommendations on portion sizes. It is expected that restaurants serving smaller portions at smaller prices should encourage people to keep a pace on the quantity of the food they eat at a regular working day.

It is also interesting to verify that, from the latest FOOD barometers (2013), there are more employees demanding optional meal sizes in 2013 (46%) then they did in 2010 (33%), and with the majority not considering important that the restaurants offer a big quantity of food (61%).

mars 18, 2014   No Comments