Having progressed from a 5-store trial to a limited national rollout, Greggs is now installing 400 Flexeserve Zone® units, as its new hot-held products prove to be very popular.
Greggs is undergoing a UK overhaul of its hot-holding operations, with a switch to Flexeserve Zone® and all-new recipes and packaging – revised in collaboration with The Alan Nuttall Partnership at its Foodservice Innovation Centre.
The 400-unit order represents a major investment by Greggs, both in the industry-leading Flexeserve Zone® and in hot-holding as a new direction for the UK food retailer’s operations.
A hunger for hot-holding
Greggs’ initial interest in Flexeserve Zone® was borne from a desire to hot-hold some of its best-selling products, explore opportunities to increase add-on sales and capitalise on dayparts.
Unfortunately, the company had been frustrated with the shortcomings of its previous solution. Nevertheless, Greggs knew that hot-holding was the direction required to keep up with changing consumer demands, expanding the range and maintaining quality.
Working alongside them, Nuttall’s established that existing hot-holding merchandisers were not fit for purpose. They were causing products to deteriorate quickly – leading to low sales and high wastage. Ultimately this resulted in a non-profitable offer and the withdrawal of their self-service hot food-to-go range.
Finding the best way forward
Greggs’ decision to install Flexeserve Zone® units meant that food could now be held at optimum temperatures without the problematic contact heat source. From here, progress could be made in menu development.
As part of a comprehensive solution, Nuttall’s Development Chef, Warwick Wakefield, worked alongside Greggs’ own team to amend existing recipes, packaging and product build, all within Nuttall’s own state-of-the-art development kitchen.
Jamie Joyce, Chief Executive of Nuttall Foodservice Solutions division, said: “When we began working with Greggs and started to assess their existing hot-holding solution, we could see a number of ways in which we could make significant improvements.
“Flexeserve Zone® and the team here at Nuttall’s have helped them to take their hot-holding to the next level, enhancing the customer experience and opening up a lot of new product possibilities.”
Greggs quickly saw that, with Flexeserve Zone® and the accompanying service, they could create a whole new range of hot food-to-go items.
A measured, successful rollout
Greggs implemented a staggered rollout, beginning with a five-store trial. During this time, Greggs and Nuttall’s were able to develop a range of new and perfected hot food-to-go options, prior to a national rollout.
The Flexeserve Zone® units and accompanying new hot-holding range were then introduced at a total of 100 stores offering products such as soups, chilli, chicken goujons and potato wedges – in a joint venture with frozen potato product manufacturer, McCain, to offer its popular product hot and ready to eat.
The items held within Flexeserve Zone® helped attract new types of customer and enabled Greggs to enhance its Meal Deal offering – allowing customers to buy, for example, a cold sandwich, a hot side and a drink as one package.
The products proved very popular across the selected stores. McCain wedges were snapped up, BBQ chicken bites sold out in their first week and 7 tonnes of pigs in blankets were sold from Greggs’ Flexeserve Zone® units in the build up to Christmas.
Greggs saw a significant increase in average basket spends at the first 100 stores to use Flexeserve Zone® and so a wider national rollout became the next logical step.
A victory for Flexeserve Zone®
Jamie continued: “Greggs is one of the most widely recognised high street food-to-go retailers in the country. To have reached this point in the journey with them, where they are undergoing a 400-store rollout of Flexeserve Zone®, is an excellent achievement for us.”
Those that are interested in Flexeserve Zone® and discovering more about the benefits of hot-holding are encouraged to get in touch.