2020 will see a host of changes coming to Hudsons, from store design to identity to communications. But perhaps the most crucial – and visible – changes will be made to the Hudsons menu.
Heading up the menu refresh is Andy Hearnden, Hudsons Head of Food and Coffee. Formerly the Executive Chef of St. Ali Coffee Roasters, and having spent time behind the pass of Melbourne institutions Entrecote and Gills Diner, Hearnden is well placed to elevate the Hudsons food offering. The ever-rotating menu will still consist of the salads, sandwiches, wraps, croissants and indulgences our customers love. (Our famous banana bread isn’t going anywhere!) But there will be more reasons to love it.
The ethos behind the refresh is simple – an emphasis is on freshly made, healthy and convenient food. Hearnden also shared some inside knowledge about the criteria for any menu refreshes. Things like ethical and sustainable sourcing, convenience to the customer, allowing for dietary requirements, and above all, freshness.
With this ethos in mind, the first menu change is the most important to Andy. “We’re consolidating the menu, which allows us to better focus on each menu item. This will in turn lead to us being able to source fresher produce for our everyday menus.” This smaller, simpler menu will allow for some other important changes to happen, and happen fast. One of the changes will please the more than 11% of Aussies who don’t eat meat. “When you’re vegetarian, there’s nothing worse than getting stuck without healthy options. So we’re developing a new range of vegetarian and plant based sandwich options.”
It’s not just about what’s on the plate. There’s a strong business imperative to the Hudsons menu refresh, according to Managing Director Justin Scotti. “Our direction on food is guided by my key beliefs,” Scotti says. “One of those is that we actually operate in different channels and so we need to recognise you need a different food offering for the different channels in which we operate. The second key belief on food is that within the channels we should have the same offering. This enables us to truly benefit from a scale of a national chain. The third belief that shapes our direction on food is when I walk into a Hudsons, I want to be proud of the food.”
“When you’re vegetarian, there’s nothing worse than getting stuck without healthy options.”
With the changes underway, there’s little doubt that every Hudsons store will be serving up food that Andy, Justin and the whole Hudsons team can be proud of. Every single day.