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socializing-with-co-workers.jpg Ezra Bailey / Stone
More than 70% said they would go to the office more frequently if they knew their “work friends” or direct team members would be there.

5 things: Study finds social time to be top back-to-office motivator

This and a continuing growth in dairy consumption are some of the stories you may have missed recently.

In this edition of 5 Things, Food Management highlights five things you may have missed recently about developments affecting onsite dining.

Here’s your list for today:

  1. Study finds social time to be top back-to-office motivator

According to Microsoft’s latest research, which polled 20,006 full-time employees across the globe this summer about what would motivate them to come into the office, social time with co-workers came out on top with 84% of employees saying they would be motivated to go into the office if they could socialize with their co-workers, while more than 70% said they would go to the office more frequently if they knew their “work friends” or direct team members would be there. To support the rebuilding of social capital, managers need to create clear, intentional opportunities for employees to connect, whether it’s a catered lunch or an offsite retreat, suggest Colette Stallbaumer, the general manager for Microsoft 365. It can even be as simple as setting up one-on-one coffee chats between people on different teams or starting an employee book club.

Read more: The No. 1 perk that will bring Gen Z and millennials into the office, according to Microsoft


  1. U.S. Dairy consumption up, led by yogurt, butter and cheese

According to new data from the USDA Economic Research Service (ERS), per capita consumption of dairy grew by 12.4 pounds per person in 2021 over the previous year, continuing a near 50-year growth trend. Among the products showing strong growth are American-type cheese, up 0.5 pounds, butter up 0.2 pounds, and yogurt adding 0.7 pounds. Yogurt consumption grew at its strongest rate in a decade and American-type cheese consumption was the second biggest increase over the past 20 years. In the past decade alone: domestic per capita consumption of cheese is up 13%; per capita butter consumption is up 18%; per capita yogurt consumption is up 2%.

Read more: U.S. Dairy Consumption Hits All-Time High in 2021 as Growing Category Evolves Toward Yogurt, Cheese, Butter


  1. Levy buys stake in Boka Restaurant Group

Levy, one of the country's largest food and beverage providers at stadiums and entertainment venues, has acquired a minority stake in Boka Restaurant Group, which operates more than 20 distinct concepts throughout Chicago, including Girl & the Goat, Swift & Sons, Momotaro, GT Prime, Alla Vita, Duck Duck Goat, Little Goat, GT Fish & Oyster, Swift & Sons Tavern, Boka Catering, Cira, Lazy Bird, and Cabrathe. “I’ve been a huge fan of Kevin and Rob for a long time, and the more I’ve come to know them, the more impressed I am with what they and their team have built,” said Levy CEO Andy Lansing in a release announcing the deal. “They are among the best in the business, and I can’t think of a better partner to move forward with as we create the next chapter in our collective stories.”

Read more: Levy acquires a minority stake in Boka Restaurant Group


  1. New California law guarantees meal breaks for public hospital staff

California Gov. Gavin Newsom has signed S.B. 1334 into law, guaranteeing enforceable breaks for public-sector and University of California workers who provide or support direct patient care in a hospital, clinic, or public health setting. The bill will ensure that public-sector employees who provide direct patient care or support direct patient care will be covered by Section 512 of the California Labor Code, guaranteeing meal breaks and rest periods for public-sector workers such as nurses at UC facilities.

Read more: California Nurses Applaud Law Guaranteeing Breaks for Hospital Workers


  1. Program helps reduce anxiety in kids with severe food allergies

A program at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia that provides cognitive behavioral therapy to children who have severe anxiety related to their food allergies can help them reduce their fears and improve their quality of life, according to a new study recently published in the Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology. Over the course of five to eight sessions, patients in the Food Allergy Bravery program receive individualized, cognitive behavioral treatment that includes repeated "brave practices" to encourage the child to take small steps towards facing allergen-related fears and building confidence around food and social situations.

Read more: CHOP's Food Allergy Bravery Clinic Helps Kids with Food Allergies Overcome Anxiety


Bonus: Chicago’s Old Post Office boasts all local food hall as dining amenity for tenant businesses


Contact Mike Buzalka at [email protected]

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