1.1 Presentation and scope of study
Fast food, also known as fast-food, is based on the sale of ready-made meals. Fast food is a terminology that has become strongly associated with speed and price in the food industry. However, the need for pre-cooked meals did not arise with the growth of the fast food sector, which dates back to the mid-1900s.
Although the spirit and conceptual framework of this world has existed for many years, the mass approach to the fast food sector is believed to have emerged in the United States in the first half of the 20th century. Consumers found themselves immersed in a chaotic lifestyle, resulting in a growing need to eat out quickly and cheaply.
Nevertheless, the popularity of fast food has undoubtedly flourished worldwide. Today, the terminology covers the mass production of a limited variety of products, the preparation of which can be easily standardized, while drawing inspiration from different cuisines (e.g. Asian, Italian, French). The Belgian catering industry has undergone many changes in recent years, not least due to changes in consumer preferences, habits and purchasing decisions, which have strongly influenced the value and growth of the various segments of the food industry. As a result, certain segments, such as fast food, mobile catering or food delivery, are gaining in importance, taking advantage of the more active lifestyle of Belgians.
1.2 The global fast food market
The global fast food market is expected to grow rapidly to reach nearly $*** in ****, representing a CAGR of *.*% from ****. This growth is expected to come mainly from emerging economies where Western brands are becoming more and more established. In the Western world, fast food is also expected to grow, albeit ...
1.3 The European market
Although the European market leaders are small compared to the rest of the world, one cannot ignore the progressive growth and the popularité́ of the fast food industry.
Western Europe ranks third in terms of the value of fast food sales. Below is a forecast of the development of the industry ...
1.4 The Belgian market
The catering sector in general is going through a good period in Belgium. In fact, Eurostat estimates that it grew by almost **% between **** and **** and estimates that the market will grow by a further **% between now and ****.
It is difficult to find statistics on the total value of the fast ...
2.1 Evolution of the budget structure of the Belgians
The structure of Belgian expenditure has changed little since ****. However, the Horeca sector (***) has seen its relative share increase from *.*% of the total budget in **** to *.*% in ****, indicating that out-of-home catering is becoming increasingly important in the lives of Belgians.
According to the FEBED (***), the per capita expenditure for the ...
2.2 Belgians generally do not plan to change their frequency of eating out of the home
The vast majority of Belgians indicated in **** that they would continue to eat out of their homes at the same frequency. Although **% of them say they want to reduce their consumption of meals away from home, these intentions are promising. In fact, the same survey reveals that worldwide only ...
2.3 Belgians seek efficiency during the working day and are more flexible when at home
A study conducted by Edenred on the ideal meal in several countries gives us elements on the criteria taken into account when Belgians choose where to eat.
Meals at work
Belgians eat lunch fairly quickly: **% of them eat lunch in less than ** minutes and **% in less than ** minutes. This speed ...
2.4 Favourite fast food chains
MacDonald's is by far the most popular fast food chain in Belgium, with almost a quarter of the population claiming to eat there. However, the most striking figure is the proportion of Belgians who do not eat at any fast food restaurant: *.*%. The market therefore has a very large customer ...
3.1 Fast food production line
The fast food sector is divided into independent players not linked to a chain and large, often international chains. Activity in this sector remains dominated by large groups and networks such as McDonald's, Subway, Yum! Brands (***).
Production in the fast-food sector is a major point in the organisation of brands, as ...
3.2 Number of establishments and relative weight of fast food restaurants
The number of fast food restaurants in Belgium has steadily increased from ***** in **** to ***** in ****, which represents a total increase of **%.
During this period, the relative weight of fast food restaurants increased:
3.3 A market split between major chains and independent players
There are two main distribution channels used by fast food restaurants.
Indirect channel: the franchise system
The most popular distribution channel for fast food chains is franchising. This methodology allows :
To manage the activity in an autonomous way To benefit from the established brand awareness To expand rapidly
To open a ...
3.4 An increasingly digitalized market
To estimate the evolution of meal delivery in Belgium, we can take the evolution of the number of restaurants available in Belgium on one of the leading platforms, TakeAway. Between **** and ****, the number of restaurants on the platform increased by ***% to reach a total of **** restaurants. TakeAway therefore has approximately ...
3.5 The main groups and brands on the market
With *.*% of the market, McDonald's remains the leading fast food company in Belgium.
Note: Limited-service restaurants usually offer lunch and dinner menus. Generally, customers pay in advance before eating. Limited-service restaurants may or may not offer seating. They usually have a take-out ordering service where customers can place their ...
4.1 The sub-segments of the fast food market
There are several sub-categories into which the fast food market can be broken down.
The most popular variable for distinguishing these fast food categories is the typology of foods sold, which can essentially be traced back to the country of origin.
Depending on the geography, fast food is segmented into :
4.2 price perception and supply trends
The fast food market is characterised by intense competition and high product substitutability, making price a powerful weapon to capture new consumers.
The original success of the fast food model is based on a double variable: price and speed. These are strongly linked, because to obtain a profit margin, companies must ...
4.3 The need to provide a healthier supply
Belgian consumers are increasingly sensitive to health and wellness issues, as evidenced by the emergence of new fast food restaurants offering balanced meals.
According to Ipsos, **% of Belgians think that their access to healthy food will improve or remain the same in the coming years. It is therefore crucial that ...
5.1 Current regulations
The horeca sector is highly regulated in Belgium. The main rules are grouped into themes common to the whole sector: Fire safety, Insurance, Indication of prices, Copyright and similar rights when broadcasting music or images, Conditions to allow your customers to smoke, Alcohol and similar drinks, VAT - Tariffs - Receipts ...
6.1 Segmentation of players
- Burger King
- Domino’s Belgium
- Pizza Hut
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