A report from Aki Technologies identifies five types of breakfast customers, each of which presents different challenges for quickserve eateries looking to boost morning sales. Millennials in a hurry tend to favor the same chains, while suburban retirees frequent different concepts in the search for leisurely budget-friendly breakfasts.
Fowl Play, a chicken concept that opened in Palo Alto, Calif., last month, doesn't take tips but gives patrons who can afford it an opportunity to contribute to meals for those who can't. Customers contribute to a fund that's converted to Fowl Play Bucks, which other visitors can use to pay for part or all of the tab.
Most quickservice brands are seen as practical but not cool, according to a Magid survey of 6,800 consumers, and that perception means chains run the risk of being interchangeable with their rivals. "[I]f you know your customers, their values and how to make emotional connections, you've got a great advantage over 'vanilla' competitors," said Magid's Rick Garlick.
Dairy producers will be eligible to enroll in revenue protection programs starting Oct. 9. "Expanding the federal crop insurance program to markets that need it is key to an effective farm safety net," said USDA Undersecretary Bill Northey.
Ivory Harlow of Dickie Bird Farm emphasizes how important the farm bill's risk management provisions are, noting that crop insurance can help farmers recoup lost revenue. The federal government discounts the cost of crop insurance, which Harlow says makes it more affordable to farmers.
North Dakota congressional candidates emphasized the need for a robust crop insurance program recently, as farmers in the state stressed its importance. "If some obstacles prevent that plant from being at a good price or having good production, that crop insurance steps in and fills in the gaps," said farmer and rancher Woody Barth.
The farm bill conference committee will finish its work "sooner rather than later," said Andrew Walmsley of the American Farm Bureau Federation. Walmsley and National Farmers Union President Roger Johnson cited a decline in farming income and low commodity prices as reasons legislators will be motivated to expedite the conference process.
The farm bill will help bring stability to the lives of farmers and the community at large, said agricultural economist Keith Coble of Mississippi State University. Farmers find value in how the farm bill addresses risks such as weather, said Sen. Cindy Hyde-Smith, R-Miss.
Sen. Heidi Heitkamp and Rep. Kevin Cramer are competing for the same North Dakota Senate seat but agree on crop insurance's importance as they serve on the farm bill conference committee together. "We've heard that from everybody -- farmers, bankers, anyone involved in farm finances -- maintain the crop insurance plan," Cramer said. "Doing that maintains the safety net that is critical to farmers getting their financing."
Sen. John Hoeven, R-N.D., spoke with young farmers about his role on the 2018 farm bill conference committee along with the bill's emphasis on crop insurance, research, expanding agricultural markets and increasing capital access. "[W]e should be able to get there," said Hoeven, addressing the likelihood that the bill will pass before it expires Sept. 30.