At nearly 17% of the total US population, Hispanic consumers represent a rapidly growing customer base for foodservice operators. As Hispanic buying power climbs by 50% to $1.5 trillion in 2015, this group will have a larger economic impact at restaurants and other foodservice locations. Restaurant operators and suppliers that understand their unique preferences will be well-positioned to capture more business from the growing Hispanic segment.

"Hispanics are looking for good taste, quality, freshness and a strong value equation when they dine out, just like other consumers," says Darren Tristano, executive vice president of Technomic, Inc. "But Hispanics also stand out from other restaurant goers—especially in terms of the high importance they place on family-friendly amenities and ambiance, food and flavor authenticity, and recognizing their culture and native language when communicating to them though marketing and advertising."

To help foodservice executives understand the latest behaviors, preferences and attitudes of Hispanic consumers, Technomic has updated its Hispanic Foodservice Consumer Trend Report. Interesting findings include:

Less-acculturated consumers are twice as likely as more-acculturated Hispanics to look for Hispanic foods (39% and 20%, respectively) and flavors (45% and 20%, respectively) at American-style restaurants.

Authenticity is key: Twice as many Hispanics (44%) compared to the general population (21%) say they would pay more for food described as authentic. In addition, 71% of Hispanic consumers say that food at Mexican or other Hispanic restaurants should taste authentic.

More than two in five Hispanic consumers (44%) agree that they are more likely to visit foodservice locations that offer Spanish-language advertisements. This percentage is strongly driven by less-acculturated Hispanics (79%).

More Hispanic consumers (46%) than the general population (33%) say that a family-friendly atmosphere is one of the most important restaurant attributes they look for when deciding where to eat.

Technomic's Hispanic Foodservice Consumer Trend Report provides comprehensive research on the latest menu and consumer trends for this growing customer base, organized into four major sections:

Menu, Marketing & Concept Trends—features Technomic's extensive research into on-trend Hispanic cuisines; Hispanic-targeted marketing strategies for restaurants; and Hispanic-inspired restaurant-concept development.

Consumer Insights—examines preferences, attitudes and purchasing decisions, based on findings from an exclusive bilingual survey of more than 1,200 English- and Spanish-dominant Hispanic consumers, providing a well-rounded representation of the American Hispanic population.

Outlook: Trends to Watch—explores emerging Hispanic-related menu, concept and consumer trends that are poised to create new areas of growth opportunity for operators and suppliers.

Profiles—appendices feature detailed concept and menu profiles for 15 Hispanic-centric restaurant brands.