Restaurant sales to climb 4.1% annually over next five years

TORONTO - Rising disposable income and a growing population will boost restaurant sales in Canada by an annual average of 4.1% over the next five years. According to a new report from the Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association (CRFA), commercial
restaurant sales (excluding foodservice sales at institutions and accommodation) will jump to $61.7 billion a year by 2016 - up from the current $52.9 billion.

While steady sales gains are expected in the coming years, 2013 will see a modest slowdown in growth - advancing just 3.9% following 2012's solid 4.7% increase. This deceleration is due to moderate economic growth and burgeoning consumer debt, which will put a damper on spending.

However, restaurant sales will pick up steam again in 2014. As the Canadian economy improves, growing disposable income and greater job creation will lift sales by 4.2%.

"Despite the economy's ebb and flow, sales are on the upswing - proving that Canadians have a strong connection to the restaurant industry," says Garth Whyte, CRFA's President and CEO. "Eighteen million Canadians come through our doors every day. This is an important relationship - for the restaurateur, the consumer and the economy. We're one of the largest employers in the country and the number one source of first jobs."

Forecast highlights
Here is CRFA's outlook for Canada's restaurant industry between 2012 and 2016:
• Caterers will grow the fastest, with an average annual sales increase of 4.6%;
• Quick-service restaurants will be close behind with annual average sales growth of 4.5%; and
• Full-service restaurants are on the road to recovery, as sales will rise an average of 4.0% per year.

At a provincial level, Saskatchewan and Alberta will boast the fastest restaurant sales growth at annual averages of 5.4% and 5.3%, respectively. All figures cited above are unadjusted for menu inflation, which is expected to average 2.6% over the forecast period.

CRFA is one of Canada's largest business associations, with more than 30,000 members representing restaurants, bars, caterers, institutions and other foodservice providers. Canada's $65-billion restaurant industry (commercial + non-commercial sales) employs more than one million people in communities across the country.

NOTE: The detailed forecast is available to CRFA members in a new report: Restaurant Industry Forecast 2012-2016.

Contact membership@crfa.ca for more information.

SOURCE:
Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association
For further information:
MEDIA CONTACT:
Prasanthi Vasanthakumar,
1-800-387-5649, ext. 4254 or
pvasanthakumar@crfa.ca.

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