Hot Stuff

March 20, 2013: Pizza for Latinos

Pizza is getting hot and spicy–and I’m not talking about shaking on more red pepper flakes. The mostly Southwestern Pizza Patrón franchise chain opened its first Chicago franchise last fall amidst an obvious demand for the pizza that specifically targets Hispanics.

Food research firm Technomic reports Pizza Patrón’s revenues jumped 77 percent over the past five years, compared to a 5 percent increase for the more mainstream Pizza Hut. Bloomberg Businessweek reports that Hispanics make up about two-thirds of the chain’s customers, who are attracted by the menu offerings of pizza with chorizo topping, QuesoStix (cheese) breadsticks and churros for dessert.

Now I’m not suggesting you open a pizzeria or convert your current one to target Hispanics. I just want to remind you that the nation’s 52 million Latinos have a growing buying power, which Bloomberg Businessweek says will hit $1.5 trillion by 2015. Hispanic households in 2010 (the latest stats) spent $2,474 a year eating out, essentially the same as all American consumers, who spent $2,502. But the growth rate for Hispanics eating out (33 percent) was nearly double that of the overall population (17 percent).

Many other national food chains (McDonald’s for one) are targeting Hispanic customers. So if you own a restaurant or sell food, depending on the demographic makeup of where you live, consider spicing up your menus with Latino food.

Photo Courtesy: Pizza Patron