Opinion pieces on the foodservice equipment and supplies industry from leaders and laymen from all aspects of the business, including dealers, distributors, design consultants and multi-unit operators.
The National Restaurant Association says restaurant performance showed slight improvement in November. A research firm predicts a lean year for restaurants. McDonald’s new HQ will lease space to suppliers. Chains will work with the National Retail Federation to train employees. McFlurry lovers are frequently out of luck.
Retail sales were up last month but restaurants saw a sales decline. Hiring foodservice employees is getting tougher. McDonald’s plans to franchise its China operation and now wants to do the same for Japan. Applebee’s and IHOP are planning major overseas expansion.
The No. 1 foodservice chain will be … Starbucks? Operators continued to hire in December. The NPD Group sees restaurant traffic stalled this year. Prediction is that menu prices will remain high but restaurants will offer deals and promotions. Well known Wall Street analyst Mark Kalinowski predicts that Starbucks will increase its restaurant count by 8.4 percent and same-store sales by +5.0 percent in 2017. Further, he believes some time in the future Starbucks will have the industry’s largest market capitalization, bypassing current leader McDonald’s.
The Food Institute sets “real sales” at restaurants higher than other projections; Worldwide restaurant traffic rose in the third quarter and Technomic believes foodservice sales will improve in 2017.
Chris LaRocca opened the first Crushed Red Urban Bake & Chop Shop location in Clayton, Mo., just outside of St. Louis, in February 2012. The chain has six locations with extensive plans to grow.
Dickey’s starts 2017 moving full steam ahead after reaching its 75-year milestone last year. Watch for Dickey’s to stake out territory on the international front this year, plus continue expansion at a steady 12-stores-per-month pace.
U.S. retail sales were almost flat in November but restaurants sales increased. One source speculates that consumers are still going to restaurants but avoiding major chains. Knapp-Track sales data remains consistently negative. Menu prices continue to increase.