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The World's 50 Best Restaurants 2022 Announces Wawira Njiru as Winner of the Icon Award

Kenyan nutritionist is recognised for her work as founder and director of Food for Education.

- Wawira Njiru, founder of Kenya's Food for Education, is named as the recipient of the Icon Award 2022 by The World's 50 Best Restaurants
- Her non-profit organisation provides nutritious meals to children in schools across the country and has delivered over 7 million meals to date
- Njiru was awarded the title of UN Person of the Year 2021 in Kenya and was also the very first recipient of...

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May 31 9:01 AM, General News



Wing Zone Partners with Miso Robotics

Today, Wing Zone – one of the nation's leading fast-casual brands serving made-to-order flavor-packed chicken wings – announced a partnership with Miso Robotics – the company transforming the restaurant industry with robotics and intelligent automation – to make Flippy 2 a part of the chain's standard build for all future restaurant locations. Wing Zone is the first fast-casual brand in the world to spec food robotics into its operations at this level.

"With over 100 new shops in our current development pipeline, our technology roadmap relies heavily on strategic partnerships with companies like..."

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May 25 9:36 AM, General News


Survey: More Than Half of Consumers Are Supporting Local Restaurants Over Chains

More than two years after the initial COVID-19 lockdown measures, many small business restaurants are getting back to business as usual with in-person dining in full swing. According to a new survey by NEXT Insurance, a leading digital insurtech company transforming small business insurance, consumers are eager to cast their delivery apps aside in support of local Main Street restaurants: data shows 64% of consumers have gone out of their way to support local restaurants over larger chain restaurants during the pandemic. Additionally, 29% of consumers...

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May 24 9:31 AM, General News


Skipcart Partners with DeliverB4 to Help Restaurants Save Billions of Dollars in Fees

Skipcart, one of the largest on-demand delivery companies in the United States, today announced an innovative partnership with technology platform DeliverB4 aimed at leveling the playing field by saving restaurants $2 or more per marketplace order through their new outsourced delivery program.

Restaurants are hurting on all fronts with limited staffing, high cost of goods and fixed costs. A recent NRA survey showed nearly 90% of operators are less profitable than when the pandemic began with no relief in sight. NRA's State of...

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May 24 9:24 AM, General News


Toast and US Foods Renew Strategic Partnership to Help Restaurants Streamline Operations and Thrive

Toast, the all-in-one digital platform purpose-built for the entire restaurant community, today announced the renewal of its strategic partnership with US Foods, a leading foodservice distributor that works with approximately 250,000 restaurants and foodservice operators across the US.

Toast and US Foods share core values of helping restaurants succeed. The renewed partnership will allow both companies to build deeper relationships with restaurant owners and foodservice operators, providing the right technology solutions to save the operator time, grow revenue and improve the customer experience...

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May 16 9:00 AM, General News


Making Restaurants Better Event Sponsored by Sysco

Let’s Talk Womxn, an action led movement of 600+ women restaurant owners, is delighted to partner with Sysco Corporation, the leading global foodservice distribution company, to present a panel discussion with the American Culinary Foundation and celebrated food personality Andrew Zimmern on May 22, 2022. This event features a gourmet dinner by five Chicago restaurateurs, embodying their collaborative Let’s Talk Womxn model.

The panel will provide insightful discussion focused on opportunities to “Make Restaurants Better” including those related to policy, business, women’s issues and solutions to help strengthen the restaurant industry...

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May 13 9:03 AM, General News


US Restaurant Industry Ends Challenging First Quarter with Customer Traffic Down from A Year Ago

In the first quarter of 2021, the third round of stimulus payments, availability of COVID vaccines and relaxed pandemic restrictions helped increase online and physical visits to U.S. restaurants by 3% compared to the same period a year before, according to The NPD Group. The first quarter of 2022, in contrast, presented a host of headwinds, including higher food and energy costs, for restaurant consumers and restaurants. Challenged by these headwinds and compared to a 3% gain in last year’s first quarter, online and physical...

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Apr 29 7:52 AM, General News


The NPD Group Announces 2022 Top 50 US Restaurant Chain Rankings

The NPD Group has ranked the top 50 U.S. restaurant chains based on sales estimates representing each chain’s total U.S. system for the year ending December 2021. Recovery was evident for the U.S. commercial restaurant industry in 2021 as pandemic restrictions lifted, vaccinations increased, and pent-up demand led to consumers dining out more. Restaurant online and physical visits increased by 9% in 2021 compared to the 12% decline in 2020. Similar to the overall restaurant trend, aggregate sales for the top 50 chains grew 15%, from...

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Apr 28 8:00 AM, General News


Restaurant Carry-Out is Losing Out to Delivery and Drive-Thru As More Convenient Ordering Options 

More than half of carry-out orders are placed at the counter

Restaurant carry-out, which dates back to ancient Rome, has provided a convenient eating solution for time-strapped civilizations for ages. However, with consumers always looking for the next level of convenience, like not getting out of the car, delivery and drive-thru orders have taken hold, making carry-out the less convenient service mode, reports The NPD Group. Carry-out orders were lagging drive-thru and delivery orders before the pandemic...

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Apr 27 8:52 AM, General News


Americans Plan to Go Big for Mother's Day this Year: OpenTable Data Shows Reservations are Up 39%

After two years of canceled celebrations and plans, Mother's Day dining is back in full force. Data from OpenTable shows that Mother's Day reservations are up 39% compared to pre-pandemic 2019 and 13% compared to 2021. Americans are feeling the excitement: according to a recent survey, 45% of those celebrating Mother's Day are planning to make up for lost time by "going big" for their mom or a mom-like figure this year.

But some things never change...

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Apr 21 8:00 AM, General News


Now on the Menu: Quiznos and Taco Del Mar Franchises in the Metaverse

REGO Restaurant Group, the fast-casual restaurant platform backed by High Bluff Capital Partners that includes Quiznos and Taco Del Mar, has announced a multi-year, strategic partnership with The NFT Agency to establish REGO brands in the metaverse, starting this summer with the introduction of upcoming NFT drops offering virtual landowners and NFT collectors the opportunity to purchase digital master franchises.

“We are excited to be among the first movers in the restaurant industry to build franchises in the metaverse. Our team is continually cooking up..."

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Apr 20 1:00 PM, General News


Chipotle Launches $50 Million Venture Fund to Foster Innovation

Chipotle is launching a $50 million venture fund.

Chipotle Mexican Grill is hoping to revolutionize the restaurant industry.

The quick-service restaurant chain announced the launch of Cultivate Next, a venture fund that will support seed-to-Series B stage companies that focus on increasing technology and innovation in restaurant operations and align with its mission to “Cultivate a Better World.” The fund will have an initial size of $50 million and will be financed solely by Chipotle.

The fund launch comes as the company is continuing its...

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Apr 20 9:19 AM, General News


Andy Nguyen Launches First NFT-backed Restaurant Group, Food Fighters Universe

Andy Nguyen and Kevin Seo, the foodpreneurs behind the world's first Bored Ape restaurant, Bored & Hungry, today announce Food Fighters Universe (FFU), an NFT collection that will connect food and Web3. Launching in May, FFU will be a collection of 10,000 unique tokens on the ETH (Ethereum) blockchain. Each purchase will help to develop the world's first NFT-backed restaurant group, focused on building gathering places in real life (IRL) and the metaverse, while offering utility and experiences for Food Fighters NFT holders.

Food Fighters NFTs will grant members...

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Apr 7 8:00 AM, General News


Freddy's Brings Back Cooked-to-Order A.1.® Chophouse Steakburger and Launches Mug® Root Beer Float

Leading fast-casual restaurant concept, Freddy's Frozen Custard & Steakburgers, announced today they are launching products featuring A.1.® sauce and Mug® Root Beer for a limited time at participating locations between now and May 31, 2022, or while supplies last. The cooked-to-order A.1.® Chophouse Steakburger will be served on a toasted potato bun with grilled onions, sauteed mushrooms, white cheddar cheese, and A.1.® sauce which, pairs perfectly with their fizzy and cold, rich...

 

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Apr 6 8:53 AM, General News


CORE® Asks Brands To Inspire Hope For Restaurant Families

CORE® (Children of Restaurant Employees), a national non-profit organization that provides financial help to food and beverage employees with children, recently announced its second launch of the Inspiring Hope campaign. The campaign calls on brands to take a stand in supporting the food and beverage industry, which has been hit hard over the past year.

"Medical bills are the number one reason for a bankruptcy in the U.S. and more than 80% of CORE grants are due to a medical crisis. Additionally more than 50% of..."

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Mar 29 8:00 AM, General News


What Gas Prices Mean for Restaurants

Starting last spring, prices across the board began to rise as sharp increases in demand for goods and labor intertwined with supply chain disruptions. No particular industry, product or service has been spared by rising costs which have been passed along to consumers. The rate of consumer inflation continued to rise to a 7.9% annual increase in February, the largest jump since 1982, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Foodservice menu prices have also been skyrocketing in this environment, driven by higher raw material and labor costs. Despite this, consumers have continued to...

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Mar 29 8:00 AM, General News


U.S. Restaurant Industry Traffic Improves in February After January Declines 

The U.S. restaurant recovery got back on track in February after January declines, reports The NPD Group. Online and physical restaurant traffic was up 2%, and consumer spending was up 8% in February compared to a year ago. Total restaurant visits in the month were down 8% from the pre-pandemic level in February 2020, according to NPD’s continual tracking of the U.S. foodservice industry.

Quick service restaurant traffic improved by 1% in February compared to a 7% decline in February 2021. This February, online and physical visits to...

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Mar 25 9:34 AM, General News


New State of the Menu Report from Technomic Spotlights Trends to Come in 2022

Technomic released a new State of the Menu report, highlighting growing ingredients and flavors on menus; trend predictions that will surface this year; and insights into best-in-class, limited-time offers. Foodservice operators are facing industry challenges that will likely persist for the foreseeable future, and this report provides crucial details on how leading restaurant operators are finding ways to innovate amid ongoing labor and supply constraints. With consumers seeking new takes on familiar items, operators are finding creative ways to make classic dishes more...

 

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Mar 25 9:10 AM, General News


SpotOn Unveils Tools to Help Restaurants Boost Profit Margins in the Face of Inflation

Points of Profit” demonstrates how flexible, integrated technology can help restaurants break out of the 5-7% profit margin plateau.

- According to the Independent Restaurant Coalition, 42% of Independent Restaurants that did not receive RRF grants are on the verge of bankruptcy
- SpotOn challenges the restaurant industry’s single-digit profit margin standards, offering guidance and complementary tools for owners and operators to boost profit
- Calculator, whitepaper, and educational sessions offer real-world examples to help restaurants translate insights into action...

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Mar 22 8:00 AM, General News


Kitchen United Named to Fast Company’s Annual List of the World’s 50 Most Innovative Companies

Kitchen United has been named to Fast Company’s prestigious annual list of the World’s Most Innovative Companies for 2022 and Forbes Best Start-Up Employers for 2022.

This year’s Fast Company list honors businesses that are making the biggest impact on their industries and culture as a whole—ultimately thriving in today’s ever-changing world. Kitchen United has been recognized for helping shape the future of the restaurant industry today with some of the most inspiring accomplishments of the 21st century...

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Mar 10 8:00 AM, General News


U.S. Restaurant Recovery Hits A Rough Patch in January With Customer Traffic Down

Quick service visits were down in January on top of last year’s declines

After ten consecutive months of traffic gains over steep pandemic-related declines, the U.S. restaurant industry’s recovery stalled in January, reports The NPD Group. Physical and online visits to U.S. restaurants were down 2% in January compared to an 8% decline in January 2021. The 4% increase in consumer spending at restaurants reflects higher food and operational costs. Total restaurant traffic, online and physical, is down 10% from the pre-pandemic level in...

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Mar 8 8:55 AM, General News


New Technomic Foodservice Index Represents Continued Decline in January, Dropping to 93.3 

Each month, Technomic releases its TIndex, which showcases the index on the total U.S. foodservice industry. January's number continued the decline from previous months, dropping to 93.3, down from 95.9 in December and 97.2 in November. Based on this data, the industry is down 6.7% over a two-year basis but has grown by 11.1% compared to January 2021.

"The main reason for this continued downward slide is the lingering effect of the COVID-19 omicron variant," explains Joe Pawlak, managing principal at Technomic...

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Feb 28 8:00 AM, General News


Church's Chicken® Values Culture and Expands Its Leadership with QSR Industry Expert and Marketer

Following a year of successful initiatives to revitalize their brand character, Texas heritage and unique bold flavors, Church's Chicken® announced it has promoted Claudia Lezcano to Senior Vice President U.S. Marketing. This move further expands its significant industry expertise to the Church's executive team which has continued to embrace diversity of thought across its entire corporate and restaurant network. In her newly updated role, Lezcano will oversee brand strategy, creative, media, and product R&D divisions across the U.S. and report directly to President...

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Feb 24 7:55 AM, General News


China’s Foodservice Industry Recovers After Experiencing Sharp Declines in 2020

Western-style quick service restaurants outperformed Chinese-style counterparts in 2021

According to The NPD Group, China’s foodservice industry ended 2021 showing signs of recovery after a tumultuous two-year period full of uncertainty brought on by COVID-19 and stringent lockdown measures throughout the country.

Thanks to vaccination rollouts and easing restrictions across the country, China reported a recovery in the first half of the year across the 22 Chinese cities tracked by NPD for the foodservice industry.

There was growth for both foot traffic and spend over the...

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Feb 16 8:00 AM, General News


COVID Restrictions Thwarted the Canadian Foodservice Industry’s Expectations for a Strong Recovery

The Canadian foodservice industry entered 2021 hopeful that the industry could get back on track. The recovery seemed like it was heading in the right direction in the third quarter — with vaccination rates high, COVID infections low, and restrictions lifted, reports The NPD Group. Consumers were anxious to return to their favorite restaurants, and online and physical visits were within just five percentage points of where they were in the same quarter before the pandemic. But the onset of the omicron wave and the return of restrictions suppressed...

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Feb 14 8:25 AM, General News


Lunchbox Raises $50M Series B Funding to Shake up the Restaurant Industry

Lunchbox, a collection of modern and creative online ordering solutions for enterprise restaurant chains and ghost kitchens, today announced the closing of a $50 million Series B funding round led by Coatue with participation from existing investors Primary and 645 Ventures as well as executives from DoorDash, Sweetgreen, and &pizza.

Since announcing their Series A in October 2020, Lunchbox has saved restaurants over $35 million that would have otherwise gone to third-party ordering platforms. Restaurants including Bareburger, Clean Juice, Fuku, Little Sesame...

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Feb 1 9:22 AM, General News


Arby's to Launch in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Arby's, one of the leading restaurant brands in the United States specializing in high-quality meat stacks, today announced an exclusive development agreement with Shahia Foods Limited Company for significant expansion across the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, with the first restaurants slated to open in late 2022. This agreement marks the brand's first-ever entry into Saudi Arabia and largest expansion into the Middle East to-date.

Shahia Foods Limited Company is one of the region's premier multi-unit restaurant operators and the master licensee for Dunkin' in Saudi Arabia and...

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Jan 28 9:33 AM, General News


New Technomic Foodservice Index Represents Continued Decline in December, due to Omicron

Each month, Technomic releases its TIndex, which showcases the index on the total U.S. foodservice industry. December’s number continued the decline from previous months, dropping to 95.9 from 97.2 in November and 97.8 in October. Based on this data, the industry is down 4.1% over a two-year basis but has grown by 23% compared to December 2020.

“The main reason for this downward slide is the emergence and rapid spread of the COVID-19 omicron variant,” explains Joe Pawlak, managing principal at Technomic...

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Jan 27 8:33 AM, General News


Hopdoddy and Grub to Form Better-Burger Powerhouse

Hopdoddy Burger Bar, the popular Austin-born burger joint, announced today that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Grub Burger Bar, the Bryan, Texas-based brand known for its signature burgers, hand-spun shakes, scratch kitchen, and craft cocktail bar, to bring a shared vision and craveable menus to more burger lovers across the nation. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

The two high-performing brands intend to capitalize on many complementary capabilities while rapidly expanding into new markets. The new combined company, HiBar Hospitality Group, is backed...

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Jan 17 1:04 PM, General News


Smokey Mo's TX BBQ Cookin' Up Growth, Purchased by Private Equity Firm Switchback Capital, LLC

Smokey Mo's TX BBQ, an authentic Texas barbeque chain with 16 locations and 21 years of successful corporate operations, was acquired by Austin, Texas-based Switchback Capital, LLC. Switchback is planning to bring the fan-favorite barbecue to even more local communities as well as a new look and feel for the iconic barbeque joint.

With a combined 60 years of private equity experience, the Switchback team adds Smokey Mo's to their portfolio as the firm's first formal investment. Founded by Tim Keyes and...

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Jan 13 1:39 PM, General News


Hard Rock Cafe Launches Pilot Program for New Burger in Partnership with Lionel Messi

Hard Rock Cafe announces the launch of the pilot program for the brand-new Messi Burger, the latest innovation in Hard Rock International's "LIVE GREATNESS" campaign in partnership with Lionel Messi. Starting today, the burger will be exclusively available at the Hard Rock Cafe Miami, FL and Hard Rock Cafe Hollywood, FL before its global release on March 1.

A tribute to the soccer sensation's ideal burger components, the Messi Burger consists of ten flavorful ingredients for a game-changing take on Hard Rock's...

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Jan 11 1:11 PM, General News


Uber Eats' Head of Dark Kitchens Joins C3 as Chief Strategy Officer

Sam Nazarian, the innovative Founder and CEO of C3 (Creating Culinary Communities), continues to elevate the global food tech platform's talent roster by naming Pasha Mehran as Chief Strategy Officer. Mehran brings more than a decade of experience to C3's fast growing team where he will oversee joint ventures with celebrity chef-driven restaurants, top digital creators, culinary markets, and ghost kitchen partners, with the goal of expanding C3's footprint across Gen Z and millennial audiences, turning the brand into a household name...

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Jan 10 3:42 PM, General News


Checkers & Rally’s and Presto Announce Largest Ever Rollout of Drive-Thru A.I. Voice Assistant

Presto, a leader in the restaurant hospitality technology industry, has been selected by Checkers Drive-In Restaurants, Inc., the operator of Checkers & Rally’s iconic drive-thrus, as the exclusive provider of automated voice ordering for all its corporate-owned drive-thru restaurants. Today’s announcement marks the largest and first of its kind rollout of an A.I.-based voice assistant solution in the hospitality industry.

Designed to help restaurants maximize labor efficiency, Presto’s next generation solutions help improve order accuracy, increase upsells, and provide a superior guest...

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Jan 10 1:03 PM, General News


The Pandemic has Permanently Altered the Consumer-Restaurant Relationship, TD Bank Survey Finds

The pandemic has permanently altered the consumer-restaurant relationship with operators investing in technology and real estate to align with changing consumer preferences, according to the 2021 Restaurant Franchise Pulse survey, conducted by TD Bank, America's Most Convenient Bank®.

Early in the pandemic, 72% of operators invested in delivery and mobile/online ordering to boost revenue during mandated stay-at-home orders according to TD's 2020 survey, and it appears the popularity of these offerings is here to stay.

Investment in delivery and mobile ordering pays...

 

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Jan 5 8:02 AM, General News


Friendly's Restaurants Mark 2021 with New Rewards Program, Menu Items and Executive Appointments

Friendly's Restaurants, known for iconic menu items such as the Fribble Milkshake, the Jim Dandy Sundae, and delectable burgers and melts, closes out the year on a sweet note. Under new ownership, the restaurant franchise rolled out a new loyalty program, delighted guests with new menu offerings while bringing back some of the Fan Favorites from years past, bolstered the executive team and hired a new agency of record, all setting the stage for transformative growth in 2022.

"It's been one year since Amici Partners Group took..."

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Jan 4 9:18 AM, General News


Improvements Towards Breakfast, Morning Snack, and Lunch Business at US Restaurants

With students returning to schools, employees returning to workplaces, and more out-of-home activities, some aspects of the US restaurant industry adversely affected by schooling, working, and staying at home during the early stages of the pandemic are starting to improve, reports The NPD Group. For example, breakfast, morning snack, and lunch dayparts were impacted by people not being outside their homes during these times, and now that many are, restaurant visits for these meals and snacks are increasing.

In the last three months ending November, online and...

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Dec 23 7:52 AM, General News


New Technomic TIndex Release Confirms Foodservice Industry Performance Down Again in November

Drivers of the decline include softness in travel and leisure as well as less traffic for independents

Technomic’s latest TIndex release, representing foodservice industry health, showed another slight decline in November from October. This result means we’ve seen two months of moderate deceleration, and Technomic cites similar drivers for both months: traffic moderation among independent restaurants and continued softness in the travel and leisure segments.

“The TIndex dropped to 97.2 in November, down from 97.8 in October and 98.9 in September,” explains Joe Pawlak, managing principal at Technomic...

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Dec 22 8:15 AM, General News


The Greg Hill Foundation's Restaurant Strong Fund and Grubhub Provide More Than $4 Million in Grants

Today, Grubhub, a leading online food ordering and delivery marketplace, and The Greg Hill Foundation's Restaurant Strong Fund, announced the recipients of grants awarded through the All Day Campaign. Over $4 million was awarded to 379 restaurants across the country that have been working hard to survive the pandemic. The grants, ranging from $5,000 to $50,000, will help restaurant owners fund indoor and outdoor dining improvements; equipment and technology maintenance and upgrades; marketing and promotion efforts; staff hiring and...

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Dec 21 1:23 PM, General News


Wingstop Appoints First Chief People Officer

Wingstop today announced the appointment of Donnie Upshaw to Chief People Officer. Donnie joined Wingstop in 2018 and most recently served as Senior Vice President of People.

"After nearly 4 years of transformational leadership and growth, I'm thrilled to congratulate Donnie on this wonderful achievement," said Wingstop Chairman and CEO Charlie Morrison. "People are the foundation of our strategy and Donnie has made a tremendous impact on our talent framework and culture, which has propelled us forward with industry-leading growth."

Donnie has been instrumental in instilling The Wingstop Way...

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Dec 17 8:09 AM, General News


Chipotle to Open First Chipotlane Digital Kitchen

Chipotle Mexican Grill today announced its first Chipotlane Digital Kitchen restaurant in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio. The new prototype offers a Chipotlane and walk-up window for efficient digital order pickup. Located at 994 Graham Road in Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio, the restaurant is scheduled to open later this month.

Chipotlane Digital Kitchen Design

The Chipotlane Digital Kitchen footprint is smaller than a traditional Chipotlane, with no dining room access for guests or a front line. The kitchen is equipped with a make line dedicated to digital orders placed through the Chipotle app and Chipotle.com...

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Dec 17 8:03 AM, General News


Popmenu Releases Hot Restaurant Trends to Watch in 2022

Despite continued curveballs, most restaurant owners/operators are feeling either very optimistic (30%) or cautiously optimistic (60%) about their outlook for 2022 as they implement strategies that will change experiences for both diners and staff. To provide deeper insight into the current and future restaurant landscape, Popmenu conducted a nationwide survey of 415 U.S. restaurant owners/operators in October 2021 and compiled the findings in a new report filled with must-know trends, real-life examples and a few surprises.

Sample of Key Findings:

The labor shortage is starving restaurant sales…

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Dec 16 8:00 AM, General News


Popeyes® Signs Landmark Deal to Enter France in 2022

Today, the Popeyes® brand and leading French restaurant group, napaqaro, are excited to announce an exclusive Master Franchise and Development Agreement to develop and grow the Popeyes brand in France and Monaco, with plans to open hundreds of restaurants across multiple formats over the coming years.

French guests can soon look forward to enjoying Popeyes world-famous products, such as the brand's signature Chicken Sandwich, which was one of the most successful product launches in Quick Service Restaurant history when it was released in the USA in August 2019...

 

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Dec 15 8:13 AM, General News


People Love New Food Ordering and Pick-Up Tech, but it's Making Them Impatient

A new survey shows that Americans love new tech-driven options for ordering and retrieving food, but the flipside is that it is making them more impatient. Of those surveyed, 64% don't want to wait more than five minutes to order at the counter or drive-thru window, while 71% of in-house diners were upset if they had to wait more than 10 minutes. More than half (55%) said they were fed up after five minutes of waiting for food in a drive-thru...

 

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Dec 14 9:07 AM, General News


Hopdoddy Burger Bar Predicts 2022 Restaurant Trends

After a rebuilding year for many restaurant brands, Hopdoddy Burger Bar, a leader in the better burger space, is predicting a new year filled with opportunities and challenges brought on by greater consumer expectations, supply chain issues and the next step in the craft beer movement.

"The past year has been all about recovery from the pandemic and looking at every facet of our business — especially when it comes to top-notch suppliers — to determine where to go from here," said Hopdoddy Vice President of Culinary Operations Matt Schweitzer. "Looking forward, we are..."

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Dec 13 7:50 AM, General News


Grubhub Releases Annual Year in Food Report Detailing the Top Trends of 2021

The end of the year is near, but before we say goodbye to 2021, we're rewinding to see how we ate and drank our way through another year of change. Grubhub, a leading online and mobile food-ordering and delivery marketplace, today released findings from its annual "Year in Food" report. Grubhub analyzed orders from over 32 million diners to see what rose in popularity throughout the year while highlighting Grubhub diners' generosity and how they gave back to communities and restaurants in need. In addition...

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Dec 9 8:00 AM, General News


Aramark Announces Strategic Collaboration With Starr Restaurant Organization

Aramark, a global leader in food and facilities management, announced today it has entered into a strategic collaboration with the Philadelphia-based Starr Restaurant Organization (Starr Restaurants). Led by entrepreneur and James Beard Award-winning restaurateur, Stephen Starr, Starr Restaurants is one of the largest multi-concept and independent restaurant groups in the United States. Together, Aramark and Starr Restaurants will drive culinary innovation and excellence through a strategic collaboration designed to provide best-in-class hospitality experiences for Aramark clients, while enabling new growth for both companies...

 

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Dec 8 8:05 AM, General News


Foodservice Industry Performance in October Slightly Declined from the Month Before

According to Technomic’s latest TIndex, its index on foodservice industry health, performance in October declined slightly compared to September, dropping to 97.8 from 98.9. The decline could be due to a few key factors, including softness in the travel and leisure segments as well as slight traffic moderation among independent restaurants.

“Based on this data, the industry is down 2.2% over a two-year basis,” explains Joe Pawlak, managing principal at Technomic. “With that being said, however, foodservice has grown by 18.5% compared to the same..."

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Dec 2 8:00 AM, General News


eCommerce Platform Pepper Raises $16M in Series A Funding for Food Distributors

Pepper, the eCommerce platform for food distributors, has raised $16 million in Series A funding that will enhance the ordering experience for distributors servicing over 25,000 restaurants and grocery stores in the U.S. and Canada. Index Ventures led the round with participation from Greylock, Imaginary Ventures, BoxGroup, Moving Capital, and Brett Schulman, bringing the total capital raised to date to $20M.

With the Series A secured, platform enhancements are a top priority for Pepper. “This funding enables us to accelerate product development in..."

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Dec 1 8:19 AM, General News


Velvet Taco Receives Significant Investment from Leonard Green & Partners

Velvet Taco (the "Company"), the popular Dallas-based restaurant concept serving up globally inspired tacos, today announced that Leonard Green & Partners, L.P. ("LGP") acquired a majority stake in Velvet Taco from L Catterton, the largest global consumer-focused private equity firm, and FB Society (formerly Front Burner Restaurants), which spearheaded the creation of Velvet Taco ten years ago. L Catterton and FB Society will retain significant minority ownership stakes in the business. Terms of the transaction were not disclosed.

Founded in Dallas in 2011, Velvet Taco is a...

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Nov 30 2:03 PM, General News


Hopdoddy Burger Bar Adds Force of Nature Bison to its Better Burger Menu

Hopdoddy Burger Bar, a leader in the burger space, has partnered with Force of Nature to provide the highest quality free-range, grass-fed bison for its famous Buffalo Bill burger or as an alternative patty option in any burger on the menu. The new partnership is Hopdoddy's latest step in evolving and elevating the better burger concept it pioneered more than a decade ago with the opening of its first Austin location.

Located in Dripping Springs, Texas, Force of Nature is committed to regenerative farming...

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Nov 29 2:07 PM, General News


Carry-out, Drive-thru, and Delivery Continue As Growth Areas for the Canadian Restaurant Industry

Online and physical visits to Canadian restaurants and foodservice outlets were flat in the year ending September 2021 compared to a year ago when traffic was down double-digits. Helping the industry recover was the growth in foodservice off-premises orders from carry-out, drive-thru, and delivery, reports The NPD Group. Although foodservice traffic has improved from the steep declines experienced last year, visits were 18% below the pre-pandemic level in September 2019, according to NPD’s continual tracking of the Canadian foodservice industry...

 

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Nov 24 8:19 AM, General News


Dine Brands International Announces First Virtual IHOP® Location in North America

Dine Brands International today announces the debut of its first virtual IHOP location in Toronto, Canada as part of its partnership with Ghost Kitchens Brands, which owns and operates a network of virtual kitchens across the continent, featuring items from more than 20 well-known restaurants and CPG brands.

At its 60 Sudbury St. location in Toronto’s Liberty Village area, guests can now enjoy a selection of IHOP’s World-Famous Pancakes, Breakfast Combos, Omelettes, Burritos, Bowls, and more for takeout and delivery. Ghost Kitchen Brands’ direct...

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Nov 23 7:57 AM, General News


Deliverect Partners With Grubhub To Help Restaurants Improve Order Accuracy & Efficiency

Deliverect, a global scale-up that simplifies online ordering for more than 12,000 establishments across 30 markets, and Grubhub, a leading global online food delivery marketplace in the U.S., have partnered to streamline orders for hundreds of thousands of restaurants. Together, the partnership helps to improve order accuracy and operational efficiency, as well as save restaurant owners' time.

The partnership allows orders made on Grubhub to integrate directly into a restaurant's POS (Point of Sale), collating all orders on one device. Restaurants on Grubhub will also be able to...

 

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Nov 19 8:00 AM, General News


Restaurant and More Convenient Lunch Meals Are Returning After A Pandemic Induced Hiatus

Before the pandemic, grabbing lunch from a restaurant or prepared foods from a grocery store was frequent because consumers were at work, school, or out and about. Restaurant lunch visits experienced steep declines early in the pandemic when 78% of lunches were prepared and eaten at home, but with more consumers returning to worksites, schools, and regular midday routines, restaurant and other convenient lunches are recovering, reports The NPD Group.

Online and physical restaurant visits during lunch increased by 4% in the year ending September 2021...

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Nov 11 8:00 AM, General News


Dine-In Traffic Remains A Headwind for U.S. Restaurant Industry Recovery

The U.S. restaurant industry continues to recover from last year’s steep declines, although not yet back to pre-pandemic levels. Total restaurant online and physical visits were up 5% in the year ending September compared to the same period last year, and down 6% from September 2019. While restaurant visits continue to improve overall, dine-in or on-premises traffic continues to struggle compared to pre-pandemic levels, reports The NPD Group.

Dine-in visits to restaurants were down 48% in the 12 months ending September 2021 compared to...

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Nov 3 8:31 AM, General News


Smokey Mo's TX BBQ Hires Restaurant Industry Veterans and Plans Texas Expansion

Smokey Mo's TX BBQ, an authentic Texas barbeque chain with 16 locations throughout Central Texas and 21 years of successful corporate operations, announced new members of its leadership team. They will be spearheading a company rebrand, franchise development and expansion, menu refinement and the enhancement of guest experiences.

The new team members have deep roots in growing Texas restaurants, including Rudy's Country Store & Bar-B-Q and Mighty Fine Burgers Fries & Shakes. Craig Haley, president, and Gini Quiroz, vice president of human resources, join the Smokey Mo's team...

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Oct 27 9:12 AM, General News


2022: The Year of the Climb

If 2020 and 2021 were the years that emphasized uncertainty, 2022 will be the year the foodservice industry focuses on new, ingenious solutions to head off challenges on multiple fronts. As operators across channels essentially do more with fewer resources, they’ll seek out strategies and partnerships that will help them innovate around menu shortages, labor constraints and the ever-shifting expectations and needs of the consumer.

What are some of the trends on the horizon for 2022, from the state of the industry and operations to menu optimization and enhancing the guest experience...

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Oct 26 8:40 AM, General News


Yum China Inaugurates Digital R&D Center to Further Implement Digital Strategy

Yum China Holdings, Inc. announced the opening of its Digital R&D Center with three sites in Shanghai, Nanjing, and Xi'an. The inauguration of the Digital R&D Center represents an important milestone for the Company's strategy to build a dynamic digital ecosystem comprised of 1) the Digital R&D Center, 2) joint venturing, and 3) third party collaboration, to provide a solid foundation for Yum China to further develop its brands and businesses, accelerate expansion and capture market opportunities.

The Digital R&D Center will consolidate and...



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Oct 21 8:00 AM, General News


‘Tis the Season: Ruth’s Chris Steak House Unveils Holiday Offerings

Ruth’s Chris Steak House, known for its unmatched dining experience and steaks served on 500-degree sizzling plates, today announced its holiday offerings available soon in-restaurant or for pick-up at more than 150 locations nationwide.

Enjoy the Holidays at Ruth’s Table

Ruth’s Chris’ in-restaurant menu for Thanksgiving encompasses the following:

Traditional Thanksgiving Dinner
Single portion inclusive of the below; exclusively available in-restaurant on Nov. 25.
- Starter: Choice of Caesar Salad, Steak House Salad or Lobster Bisque
- Entrée: Sliced Oven Roasted Turkey, Ruth’s Sausage and Herb Stuffing...

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Oct 21 8:00 AM, General News


Grubhub And Restaurant Strong Fund to Give $4 Million to Restaurants

Today, Grubhub, a leading global online food delivery marketplace, and The Greg Hill Foundation's Restaurant Strong Fund, announced they will be giving $4 million in grants to support restaurants across the country that have been working hard to survive the pandemic. Ranging from $5,000 to $50,000, the grants are part of the Restaurant Strong Fund's All Day campaign and will help restaurant owners fund indoor and outdoor dining improvements, equipment and technology maintenance and upgrades, marketing and promotion efforts, staff hiring and training, Covid-19...

 

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Oct 8 7:50 AM, General News


Technomic’s Latest TIndex Release Reveals Reasons for Softening of Foodservice Industry Growth

Technomic’s August TIndex, Technomic’s index on the total foodservice industry, showed decelerated growth. The number dropped to 98.1 in August from 101.1 in July, meaning the industry declined 1.9% over a two-year basis but has grown by 28% compared to the same month in 2020.

“There are a few clear reasons for this softening,” explains Joe Pawlak, managing principal at Technomic. “First, of course, is due to increased fears of the delta variant. This deceleration is also seen mostly within the travel and leisure segments..."

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Oct 1 11:10 AM, General News


Canada’s Foodservice Industry Recovery Overall Is Steady in August, But Has Some Declines

Canada’s commercial foodservice industry remained on a stable course to recovery in August, reports The NPD Group. In August, online and physical visits to restaurants and other foodservice outlets increased by +16% compared to August 2020 and were down -4% compared to the pre-pandemic level in August 2019. Consumer spending increased by +23% in August compared to the same month year ago and is up +1% from August 2019.

While total foodservice traffic and consumer spending continued to improve in August, the...

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Sep 30 8:35 AM, General News


Indeed and OpenTable Join Together to Accelerate US Restaurant Recovery

According to the National Restaurant Association, the restaurant industry is 1 million jobs below where it should be before the pandemic. That’s why, Indeed, the world’s number one job site, and OpenTable, the world's leading provider of online restaurant reservations, announced today the launch of Interview Days: Restaurant Jobs. This month-long U.S. hiring initiative, which begins on October 1st, aims to accelerate the recovery of the food and beverage industry by providing free hiring tools to help businesses and restaurateurs source, screen and host interviews. A new dedicated portal...

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Sep 28 8:53 AM, General News


U.S. Restaurant Industry Continues Gradual Recovery in August While Dine-in Visits Remain Low

Despite bad weather and the delta variant spread, consumer online and physical restaurant visits in August continued to recover from last year’s steep declines, reports The NPD Group. U.S. restaurant traffic increased by +5% over the -10% decline in August 2020 and declined by -5% compared to the pre-pandemic level in August 2019. Larger average check sizes drove a +13% increase in dollars compared to a year ago and a +3% gain in dollars over the same month two years ago, according...

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Sep 22 8:00 AM, General News


Cracker Barrel Reports Fourth Quarter And Full Year Fiscal 2021 Results And Quarterly Dividend

Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, Inc. today reported its financial results for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2021 ended July 30, 2021.

Fourth Quarter Fiscal 2021 Highlights

- Total revenue in the fourth quarter of $784.4 million was approximately flat compared to the fourth quarter of fiscal 2019 total revenue of $787.1 million.
- Compared to the fourth quarter of fiscal 2019, comparable store restaurant sales decreased 6.8% and comparable store retail sales increased 18.2%.
       - Comparable store off-premise restaurant sales grew 108.6% compared to the...

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Sep 21 8:46 AM, General News


OpsAnalitica and FreshFry Launch Partnership to Help Restaurants Define and Track Sustainability

OpsAnalitica, the restaurant ops and food safety compliance analytics platform, and FreshFry, the sustainable food tech company providing restaurants with all-natural, plant-based, easy to use frying oil filtering solutions, are thrilled to announce their partnership in an effort to help restaurants define and track sustainability.

The food industry spends over $80B per year on edible oil and together, the OpsAnalitica and FreshFry partnership provide restaurants with money-saving solutions for oil mismanagement. The partnership is an integration of FreshFry's compliance checklist into the OpsAnalitica platform...

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Sep 8 8:59 AM, General News


Wingstop Promotes Michael Skipworth and Alex Kaleida

Wingstop, the leading digitally-savvy, tech-focused restaurant brand with more than 1,600 locations worldwide, today announced the promotion of Michael Skipworth to President and Chief Operating Officer, and Alex Kaleida to Chief Financial Officer. Michael succeeds Mahesh Sadarangani, the Company's COO who has resigned after being recruited to become CEO of a private equity-backed company.

"I'm thrilled to provide amazing growth opportunities within our organization for both Michael and Alex," said Chairman and CEO Charlie Morrison. "People are the foundation of our business, and I truly believe we have some of..." 

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Aug 31 9:09 AM, General News


Bojangles To Close For Two Upcoming Mondays To Give Staff a Break

Following a long, challenging year and a half for the restaurant industry, Bojangles is investing in its most important asset by closing all company-owned stores on Monday, Aug. 30, and Monday, Sept. 13, to give around 8,000 crew members and managers a well-deserved break.

Affected stores will close at their regular times the Sunday prior and reopen at their regular times the following Tuesday. For a full list of which stores will be closed on Aug. 30 and Sept. 13, go here.

“We appreciate everything our..."

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Aug 31 8:30 AM, Foodmarket


Technomic Study Uncovers Labor Crisis for Foodservice Industry May Not be Temporary

Technomic recently released the Crisis on the Front Lines Multi Client Study uncovering drivers and deterrents to unit-level employment in the commercial restaurant industry among job seekers and current employees. The strategic study also uncovers strategies and tactics for operators as they navigate staffing locations and positioning their brand as employers of choice.

“Foodservice operators are facing new challenges in connecting with job-seekers while also keeping up with...

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Aug 24 8:59 AM, General News


Checkers & Rally's Continues Nationwide Growth with California Expansion

Checkers Drive-In Restaurants, Inc., the parent company of Checkers & Rally's iconic drive-thru restaurants, today announced it is accelerating growth on the West Coast with a call for interested franchisee operators for the San Diego market. This announcement follows a recently announced 15 store development agreement in Orange County. The company has available growth opportunities through additional franchise agreements in Texas, Arizona and California markets in addition to San Diego.

With a focus on nationwide growth, Checkers & Rally's continues to bolster its multi-unit franchise system, offering...

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Aug 24 8:36 AM, General News


OpenTable And CLEAR Partner to Help Restaurants Streamline Proof Of Vaccination Across The US 

As the Delta variant spreads and more cities require proof of vaccination for indoor dining, OpenTable, the world's leading provider of online restaurant reservations and part of Booking Holdings Inc., and CLEAR, the secure identity company, are partnering to offer diners a simple way to show proof of vaccination at a restaurant through CLEAR's digital vaccine card.

"Our partnership with CLEAR furthers our commitment to help both restaurants and diners navigate dining out in the next chapter of the pandemic," said Debby Soo, CEO...

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Aug 23 10:03 AM, General News







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