After several years of traffic declines, visits to restaurants at supper increased over the last three quarters, according to foodservice market research from The NPD Group, a leading market research company.
Supper visits increased 2 percent and 1 percent in the third and fourth quarters of 2010, respectively, and increased 2 percent in the first quarter of 2011, according to NPD’s CREST service, which continually tracks consumer use of foodservice outlets. Quick service restaurants, which represent 78 percent of total industry traffic, drove the growth at supper, while visits at midscale and casual dining remained weak.
“The improvement may reflect some easing in unemployment, a modest improvement in consumer confidence as well as a release of pent up demand during the periods reported,” says Bonnie Riggs, NPD restaurant industry analyst. “I also believe that rising food costs in-home have narrowed the gap between the price of food at-home and a restaurant meal.”
Published by Kristin 6/30/2011