Restaurant Visits Down, Though Decline Slows

  • September 14, 2010
Visits to restaurants declined by 1% in the quarter ending June 2010, the eighth consecutive quarter for traffic declines, according to foodservice market research from The NPD Group.

However, that was an improvement over the 3% traffic loss seen in spring 2009.

In addition, spending at commercial foodservice outlets increased by 1% in the quarter, after four consecutive quarters of declines.

According to NPD's Crest, which tracks commercial/non-commercial foodservice outlets on an ongoing basis, traffic was weakest at full-service restaurants, visits to casual dining restaurants were down 2%, and midscale restaurant traffic was down 3% in the quarter. QSR traffic was stable in the quarter, following five quarters of year-over-year declines.

Visit losses at non-commercial foodservice outlets also eased slightly in the second quarter, though traffic is still 6% below year-ago levels.

The breakfast meal day part saw growth, with visits up 1% for total restaurants and up 2% for QSR's versus same quarter last year, reflecting targeted marketing support by some major QSR chains, according to NPD. But supper visits were down 2% across all restaurant segments, while lunch visits declined by 2%, with visits to full-service restaurants particularly weak.



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