Food Service Matters | Food and Beverage Trends and News
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FSM Talks Self Service Kiosks

APPETIZE: Self Service Kiosks Boost Sales

Posted by Tim Newcomb | May 9, 2019 | ConcessionsGeneralPulse 


The self-service concessions kiosk is no longer an optional solution in sports venues, said Mike Plutino, founder and CEO of consultancy Food Service Matters. Appetize, a point-of-sale, inventory and analytics platform, agrees, releasing new data from three U.S. sites that shows self-service kiosks create a significant increase in average order size compared with traditional counter interactions.

Take Me Out to The Ball Game

‘Buy Me Some Peanuts and Cracker Jack’

Tim Newcomb

Apr 18, 2019

Expansion of MLB FoodFest a testament to baseball’s ties to food

After the success of Major League Baseball’s inaugural FoodFest event in New York City in 2018, the league has not only brought back the event but also expanded it to Los Angeles and London for 2019. The event, which makes its first appearance in LA later this month, brings unique concession items from all 30 MLB stadiums under one roof and testifies to the prominence of concessions at the heart of the baseball stadium experience.

“Baseball games appear to be about the experience throughout the ballpark as much as it is about seeing the two teams play,” said Andrew Spencer, vice president of customer engagement and revenue at Delaware North.

Compared with in-game transactions at NFL, NHL and Major League Soccer venues, where purchases primarily happen during breaks in the action, MLB transactions take place evenly throughout the game.

“We have tracked transaction dollars and unit sales by time and see that baseball per caps rise about an hour before the first pitch and tend to be very stable throughout the game versus other leagues, when the game play will interrupt sales in a very dramatic fashion,” Spencer said. “Our findings indicate that the importance of food and food choice is more important to baseball fans than other sports fan.”

While Aramark spokesperson David Freireich said that food isn’t necessarily more valuable to the baseball experience, it is more integrated. “Perhaps more than any other sport, the food experience in baseball has become an essential part of shaping the overall gameday experience as well as a defining ballpark characteristic,” he said.

Various factors help contribute to this: the warmer months encouraging movement around the stadium, the length of the game and style of play with 18 half-inning changeovers, and the length of an 81-game home season attracting fans to the stadium multiple times. Especially for season-ticket holders, having a “wide variety of great food becomes very important,” Spencer said. Baseball also tends to attract more families.

“All of these factors create an environment that encourages socializing and is conducive to moving around,” Freireich said. “It’s important to remember that fans are foodies too, so we design our menus to appeal to a wide variety of tastes and flavors. Menus need to be fresh, innovative, on-trend and taste good.”

Mike Plutino, founder and CEO of the Food Service Matters consultancy, said the culture of baseball and food are more closely aligned than in other sports. He credits the history — the “buy me some peanuts and Cracker Jack” line from “Take Me Out to the Ball Game” comes as part of the tradition — of connecting fans to food and also teams creating a preseason “food story” every season. “It sets the stage for a season’s worth of taste-testing and it is a win-win for the fans, the teams and the team’s food and beverage sponsors,” he said.

Taylor Brown Joins Food Service Matters


Atlanta, Georgia– April 1, 2019–   Food Service Matters (FSM), a leading food service advisor and advocate for the ownership groups of some of the biggest names in sports, is bolstering its leadership team and client services with the addition of Taylor Brown.

As an innovative disruptor in the hospitality industry, FSM’s growing roster adds an additional layer to its infrastructure with Brown, whose financial acumen combined with Food Service Matters’ operational expertise, will continue to showcase the group as an industry Power Player as named by Sports Business Journal, as a best in class resource and business leader.

Brown is a licensed CPA and holds a Master’s Degree in Accountancy from the University of Georgia’s Terry College of Business. His background includes four years as a CPA performing large scale company audits and consulting projects for industry heavy hitter Deloitte in their Atlanta office before relocating to Austin, TX with Holtzman Partners. He most recently served a year in the role of Sales Director with MindStart in Austin. 

Mike Plutino, Food Service Matters’ Founder and CEO announced, “We’re excited to introduce Taylor as an addition to the FSM team.” He went on to add “With five years under our belt we’ve come to recognize the importance that financial performance plays into our clients’ needs.  Driving and tracking our growth plans is an important component of our business and it became evident that evolving our team with a seasoned financial expert was a priority.  With his diverse and accomplished background Taylor will bring a wealth of knowledge and a proven track record of successfully driving revenue that will pair with our operational excellence to support our client’s goals in increasing food and beverage revenue and guest satisfaction.”

While Food Service Matters is headquartered in Atlanta, GA, Brown, who’s official start date is April 1st,will office out of Austin, TX. 

About Food Service Matters

Food Service Matters (FSM) is a solutions-based food, beverage, and hospitality consulting group specializing in sports and entertainment food service. FSM is focused on providing facility and team ownership with an objective, independent evaluation of their food and beverage operation. FSM clients include Rose Bowl Stadium, Golden State Warriors, Memphis Grizzlies, Atlanta Hawks, Miami Dolphins, Tennessee Titans, and Speedway Motorsports, Inc. 

For more information on Food Service Matters please visit