This traditional Northern European breakfast seemed exotic at the time, but today, in a culture much more accustomed to cultural pastry imports it strikes me that æbelskiver pans and other novelties could be easily adapted for deployment in quick-serve settings. The big picture here is that a new kind of carrier that is transportable, handheld, neat, and endlessly versatile, with both sweet and savory possibilities, strikes me as a compelling idea worthy of further investigation.
2. Shoot for utter uniqueness
Oatmeal has been among the most toyed with and successfully adapted morning foodstuffs, but one idea that has yet to emerge on any meaningful scale is a drinkable form. Grain-based beverages are still somewhat foreign in the continental U.S., though in Latin America, hot, corn masa–based atoles are a fixture of many morning routines.
We’re seeing the occasional addition of grains in by-now-familiar smoothies, but beverages based around grains remain a relative rarity. Some enterprising quick-serve chain could, without a great deal of conceptual heavy lifting, launch a line of oat- or other grain-based beverages flavored with coffee, chocolate, berries, hazelnut, or any number of other additions. The result could be both novel and delicious—a satisfying creation capable of conferring a first-mover advantage to whoever decides to act sooner than later.
3. Think in terms of lifestyle shifts
Several reports have noted recently that Americans are beginning to treat breakfast as a two-part process rather than a one-shot deal. What this suggests is that the late-morning meal or snack occasion British and Australian consumers refer to as “the elevenses” could be the new fourth (or fifth?) meal.
If we begin to think in terms of offering a breakfast take-away opportunity that gives consumers something for now and something for a little later on in the morning, the profit-generating potential could be substantial. Imagine a Japanese bento box–style container packed with a hot morning muffin or roll alongside a packaged yogurt parfait or fruit cup intended for later in the a.m. cycle. Such a creation might enable quick serves to take care of their valued customers twice in a single morning and capture a share of the pre-noon revenue that finds its way to vending machines, food trucks, and employee cafeterias.
It’s not easy to liberate consumers from their preferred morning rituals, but the business value of doing so may justify at least a small investment in innovation and marketing. The potential payoff could be eye opening.
Source: qsrmagazine.com, 9.26.12