Burger consumption is up considerably since 2009, according to a study by Technomic, a Chicago-based market research company.
Nearly half of the consumers surveyed said they eat a burger at least once a week, up from 38 percent in 2009. Technomic attributes the rise to the continued prominence of burgers on quick-service value menus.
"There are other factors at work, however, as the specialty burger craze has driven growth in a way that is almost defiantly separate from pricing," says Sara Monnette, director of consumer research at Technomic. "The better burger restaurants in the fast-casual segment have put the burger top-of-mind for consumers, and even the quick-service chains have begun to respond and focus portions of their menus specifically on quality perceptions."
Technomic's "Burger Consumer Trend Report" also notes that 23 percent of consumers between the ages of 18 and 34 say having a vegetarian burger option on the menu is important. The importance of healthier menu items extends across the board as half of those surveyed say it is very important to them that the meat used to make their burger be steroid-free.