Is the golden ear of chain restaurants over? Growth within the grocerant sector of ready-to-eat and ready-to-heat prepared food continues to expanding. Drug stores chains Walgreens, Rite Aide, Dollar Stores, even Sears and Target are now selling fresh prepared food.
The NPD Groups .Bonnie Riggs, told Convenience Store News. "The vast majority of c-stores' business is takeout, which accounts for 95 percent of all visits, with the greatest percent of the business occurring at the morning meal and snacks, but lunch meal business is growing strongly," she said.
The C-store sector’s overall lunch business was up 4 % conveniences stores that are selling fresh prepared food they are up even more. The c-store industry's largest niche is snack business, which has remained stable. "In this downturn, 'flat' is the new up," she said.
The big news is that, the number of quick-service restaurants declined 1 percent, or 2,521 units, from April 1, 2009 to March 31, 2010, according to NPD's Spring 2010 ReCount, a census of U.S. commercial restaurant locations.
Even worse, visits to U.S. restaurants declined 3 percent for the year ended May 2010. Plus, consumer spending at restaurants declined “1 percent, the first decline in dollars NPD reported since it began tracking the foodservice industry nearly 35 years ago.” Success does leave clues and repositioning while focusing the evolving consumer is clue number one.
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