Food companies like restaurants and manufacturers use segmentation to identify and target a market of consumers likely to purchase from them. Based on the information known about a particular target market, the companies create special offers and messaging to entice consumption of their products and services. Common segmentation strategies include restaurant service type, price range, geography and product type.
Segment by restaurant service type if you are analyzing different places to buy meals. "Restaurant News Source" states you can segment by takeout/delivery, all-you-can-eat buffet, cafeteria service or table service. Cafeteria service is defined as a setting where the consumer chooses items from a large selection and only pays for those items. Table service is defined as a setting where service staff takes care of patrons.
Segment by price range if you are categorizing the cost of meals at restaurants. JKG Marketing states a common way to segment by price is under $15 per meal, $16 to $25 per meal, $26 to $50 per meal and more than $50 per meal. You can also segment by the price of individual food items. The range will be determined by the average cost of the item.
Segment food by geography when dealing with state or regional items and cuisine types. Examples of state or regional items might include fresh seafood from states on the coast, or Coney Island hot dogs from New York. Common cuisine types include bakery, cafe, kosher or steakhouse. Other cuisine types are identified by the country the food originates from such as Chinese, Mexican, French or Italian.
Segment by product type if categorizing food by its composure. The "Star Global Tribune" suggests segmenting by organic, processed, dairy, meat or poultry. Organic food is defined by the United States Department of Agriculture as food produced by farmers who emphasize the use of renewable resources. The farmers use no antibiotics on animals or pesticides on vegetation. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration defined processed food as any food product that has been subject to canning, cooking, freezing, dehydration or milling.