Everyday Income/Make Money from Food/



Mini Meals Business

I love Mexican food in particular tacos, nachos and so on. But regular tacos and nachos in the Philippines and Australia can be expensive as they are more of a specialist food so I budget my money and just buy them when I can. Then a friend of mine introduced me to a food shop selling bite sized tacos. I was hooked. I was able to taste but not fully gorge on tacos and nachos while maintaining my budget.


People and Their Eating Habits and Preferences

There are people like me who are willing to taste even in small quantities the food we like. The most obvious reason is financial constraint or maybe we just cannot finish off the regular meal portion and consider buying the full meal a waste of money. Whatever the reason is these bite sized or small sized food fulfil a need unmet by regular sized foods.

Here is more proof. If you eat at a food court in Australia in food shops that serve rice like Chinese and Indian you will be offered at least 3 small portions but different kinds of food to go with your rice. It means that people want not only variety in food but can do with small portions as well.

I have seen also very large people especially women who pick the smallest sized meals in these food shops. I am a small person but I order always the largest sized meal and smaller meals won’t do for me but I have seen people larger than me who order smaller meals than me. This is a proof that everyone has different food intake requirements which may not be according to their size.

I have also seen in my many years as an employee eating at office kitchens, food courts, and restaurants people who almost eat only a few bites of food and are already satiated. I would watch with my own eyes as near complete meals are thrown away because the person eating them got easily tired with the taste of their meals.


The Asian Meal Scenario

I have also eaten at Korean restaurants in Australia and can confirm that they serve a lot of side dishes just before the main meals. These side dishes are so small in quantity that you cannot possibly even appreciate their full taste but their sheer numbers ensure that the eater experience their taste just enough that one looks forward to their main meal to be satiated.

I have also seen a company that sells flavoured rice in much smaller cups than regular sized drinking cups. Rice is almost always served with other food like meats to make them more palatable but this company only garnishes their rice with a small percentage of meat and vegetables.

The meat and vegetable content of their so-called meal is only at most five (5) percent of their total cup meal. As I have mentioned these cup meals are so small that most persons used to regular meals sized meals will not be satiated. Whenever I buy their cup meals to take home and eat I always add rice from home to their cup meal to make me feel full after eating it.

They however sell their cup meals at a little bit cheaper price than a regular meal that can be bought at a fast food restaurant like let us say McDonalds. It is worth noting that their meals are cheap enough to be bought by many people who feel satiated by them. The real question is: Are they being bought as meals or as snacks?

Incidentally this rice food store is located in the Philippines where most of the people eat rice on a daily basis and most east rice several times a day which may include breakfast, lunch and dinner. Many people from these country even eat rice as snacks and do not feel satiated unless they eat rice with their meals.

This means that this rice food shop is targeting all the types of the eating behaviour by these people. This includes breakfast, lunch, dinner, snacks and everything else that is in-between if ever there is. They do not target people with heavy appetites but they sell in contrast finger foods like springs rolls which can be bought separately with rice.

This means that they address the more affluent and poorer customers at the same time. By offering their finger foods separately with rice they ensure that their more affluent customers can order and eat finger foods without rice. Of course finger foods not taken with rice is more delicious as it concentrates the delicious taste of the spring rolls in one’s mouth.

The cheaper customers would likely bring their spring rolls at home and eat them with rice cooked in their own homes. Spring rolls as an accompaniment to rice is a cheap but also satisfying meal. Add your own condiments at home and you further stretch your spring roll and rice meal.

This might sound alien to people who do not primarily eat rice and to be direct to western people but many people in the world cannot afford a lot of variety of ingredients in their meals. Many people who migrate to western countries however bring with them their own set of eating and food habits and pass it on to their descendants.


The Western Meal Scenario

Coming from Asia and migrating to the West one of the first thing I noticed was the variety of food and ingredients on offer in the West. The portions were also much larger. One of the result of eating Western food is that I grew much fatter than before but have similar healthy foods. I also noticed westerners much taller than me eating lesser food than what I was ordering.

Sometimes I would see them not finishing their meals and beverages as well. I even see groups of people buying one regularly sized meal and share it between them. I also know of a person who because of his work skips his lunch and eats only cookies which gets him by. I also for example because of my work regularly just eat one meal a day and would snack a little when I have time. This gets me by. I am sure there are people like us who prefer to eat our food in small bursts everyday.

I believe that there is a market for these kinds of people with their own kind of eating habits and preferences. There should be cheap small mini dishes that can be bought en masse or just bought together with a main meal just to liven the taste buds of the eater. The Koreans have proven that this is a viable product and so have my other examples.

The Korean food model can for example work in Australia as I see a lot of westerners eating at Korean restaurants and eating the Korean way where they first eat the wide variety of side dishes before settling down with several big portioned main meals. In fact when I ate with a few friends in one they did not even finish the side dishes nor their main meals. This shows a definite need for much smaller meals.


Conclusion

These kinds of small portion meal foods are not merely snacks but bonafide smaller versions of meals. They are just the right products that small eaters need to get them by. Many people would already be satisfied with just eating a small portion of their regular meals which means money wasted for them but good for the seller and their customer know this.

A smart seller would make a win-win situation between them and their customers. They may make smaller profits from smaller meals but they can attract new customers who would rather buy small meals than make it themselves or supplement their own meals.