Tips to get your chilled food displays autumn-ready

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Those summer evenings shorten. The first tendrils of autumn appear in the air.

Leaves begin to turn yellow and flutter to the ground, people reach to the back of their wardrobes for their woolly jumpers, and their minds turn to more seasonal meals and flavours – pumpkin-spiced latte, anyone?  

We might not quite be there yet, but autumn is just around the corner. How prepared is your business? 

Your ice cream sales will dwindle, picnic food sales will slide off, and lunchtime salad boxes will stay on the shelf. It’s vital to remain ahead of the curve and make sure that your business is ready for the autumn and winter months ahead.

Whether you run a specialist farm shop or a local convenience store, you can still tap into your customers’ needs as the seasons change by optimising your display fridges for the new season. 

How to prepare your food business for the autumn trade

Preparing your food business for autumn requires a blend of seasonal marketing, menu adjustments and operational tweaks to address the changing customer preferences and environmental conditions.

Incorporate autumn-specific ingredients such as pumpkin, apples, root vegetables and hearty grains.

Introduce warming dishes, like soups, stews and casseroles. Offer specials for occasions like Halloween, Guy Fawkes Night and harvest festivals.

Add a range of hot drinks, including spiced lattes, hot chocolate and herbal teas.

Adjust the interior décor with autumnal themes, using warm colours, decorative leaves and rustic touches. Ensure your dining space is warm and inviting, considering heating solutions if needed.

Run promotions to entice customers to visit during this transitional season. Update your online presence, website and social media with autumn themes and promotions.

If you offer al fresco dining, outdoor heaters and shelters to ensure comfort.

Consider introducing fire pits or covered areas to protect from early rain.

Ensure staff are well-informed about the new menu items, seasonal ingredients and any promotions so they can upsell effectively and answer customer queries.

Autumn is a time of harvest. Collaborate with local farmers to source fresh, in-season produce.

Consider offering baked goods like pies, tarts and bread made from seasonal ingredients.

And if you run a pub or bar, autumn-inspired cocktails, ciders and seasonal ales can be a hit.

If you offer takeaway, consider packaging that retains heat well. Autumn-themed packaging can also enhance the seasonal feel.

Adapting your food business for autumn not only caters to the changing tastes and preferences of your clientele but also establishes your brand as responsive, innovative and attuned to the joys of seasonal variation.

Here are some of the steps you can take to get ready for the fast-approaching autumn season:

Seasonality is key

Some businesses naturally lend themselves to seasonality. Locally-grown produce will automatically be reflective of the seasons, with pumpkins ripening in the fields and spicy chutneys appearing on the shelves. Other businesses may feel less adaptable to changing seasons, but think about what your customers want to eat and buy in the autumn. If you have a sandwich bar appealing to local office workers, think about sandwich fillings. Colder days call for heavier fillings, with stronger autumnal tastes. Change your offers and upsell cakes rather than ice creams. Our eating habits change through the seasons. Salad bowls get put away, and slow cookers pulled out. Think about how you can tap into these changing tastes and convert them into sales.

Consumers buy with their eyes

Once you’ve worked out which angle will work for your business, then you need to consider how to sell this to your customers. Consumers are extremely visual. An enticing refrigerated display can tempt them into making unplanned purchases or adding extras to their shopping list. We have an excellent range of different styles of display fridges to suit all manner of businesses. Delicatessens need spacious display cabinets to showcase their meats and cheeses. Promote your autumnal cheeses, stronger cheddars or those with fruit, for the autumn. Summer palates tend to be lighter, with customers leaning towards a fresher taste. Design your display with an autumnal feel, oranges and browns are classic autumn colours, think of falling leaves and glorious pumpkins. If you run a cake and coffee shop, then take a look at our cake display fridges, which will allow you to showcase your cakes fully, as you move away from fresh berries cakes to autumn flavours such as ginger and cinnamon. Spend time considering how to promote your products to your customers. From the placement of your display fridge to how your products are arranged inside, your decisions will have an impact on your sales. Don’t be afraid to experiment, just make sure you keep a record of what you’ve changed, so you can evaluate what works.

Promoting seasonal products shows good environmental practice

Seasonal eating is incredibly important as part of our action against climate change. Promoting seasonal eating by embracing the changing seasons will reflect well on your business. Consumers are moving away from buying forced strawberries in January, with high food miles, and are becoming more conscious of the effect of their food choices on the environment. As well as promoting seasonal eating, upgrading your refrigeration units will also show good environmental awareness. Modern refrigeration units have been designed to be far more energy efficient than their older counterparts. This means they consume less energy, which reduces your business’s running costs. Given that consumers are now making buying decisions based on a brand’s green credentials, it’s now more important than ever to make environmentally conscious decisions.

Make the most of your refrigeration with high-quality units from Fridgesmart

Whether you’re looking to upgrade your current units to more energy-efficient modern units, or are looking at expanding your current refrigeration to provide your customers with more choice, take a look at our commercial refrigeration range. If you’re planning for autumn and want to get ready, we are on hand to help you choose the best unit for your business. If you need an urgent replacement for a broken refrigerator, we can help. We work with businesses of all sizes, from small farm shops to supermarket chains, and we bring our expertise and professionalism to each and every one of our customers. Get ready for autumn with a Fridgesmart commercial refrigerator. Call our helpful and friendly team today on 01792 677169.