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U.S. Restaurant Industry Ends 2020 Making Its Way Out of the Steep Declines Caused by Pandemic
The U.S. restaurant industry closed one of the most unpopular years in history moving its way out of the steepest declines the industry has experienced since the Great Recession, reports The NPD Group. Customer transaction declines at major restaurant chains in December were down -10% compared to same period year ago, a 27-point improvement from April, the height of the shelter-at-home and restaurant dine-in closure mandates, when transactions declined by -37% from a year ago, according to NPD’s CREST® Performance Alerts, which provides a rapid weekly view of chain-specific transactions and share trends for 75 quick service, fast casual, midscale, and casual dining chains representing...
Britain’s Drive Thru Spend Up 45% September to November 2020
The trend for ordering food and drinks from our cars at Britain’s growing number of drive-thru restaurants soared from September to November 2020 according to global information company The NPD Group. There were 121 million visits to Britain’s 2,000 quick service restaurants (QSR) that offer drive-thru in those three months in 2020, a 14% increase on the same period last year. Spend was up 45% to £723m over this time frame, with consumers tending to place larger-than-average orders at the drive-thru window.
According to footfall analysis from NPD’s SnapMyEats data, the growth in drive-thru in these three months was a result of consumers switching from eating in and takeaway options during lockdowns and tiering, rather than...
McDonald's to Launch Three New Chicken Sandwiches Next Month
McDonald's is launching three chicken sandwiches beginning February 24, joining long-time sandwich favorites like the Big Mac, Quarter Pounder, Egg McMuffin, and Filet-O-Fish. The new options include a Crispy Chicken Sandwich, Spicy Chicken Sandwich, and the Deluxe Chicken Sandwich.
McDonald's began testing the Crispy Chicken Sandwich in Houston and Knoxville, Tennessee, last year. The sandwich is made of a fried chicken filet served on a potato roll, topped with butter and pickles. The spicy option comes with a spicy pepper sauce, and the deluxe sandwich comes with shredded lettuce, tomatoes, and mayo.
In November, Joe Erlinger, President of McDonald's USA, said a new crispy chicken sandwich would...
El Pollo Loco Unveils New L.A. Mex Restaurant Design to Meet Evolving Customer Demand
El Pollo Loco unveiled its new restaurant of the future designed to enhance off-premise convenience powered by a more robust and frictionless digital experience.
The re-imagined El Pollo Loco restaurants have been inspired by the changing habits of consumers to enjoy a more digital-forward and contactless off-premise experience that was inevitably sped up by...
Technomic's Take: What to Expect in Canada in 2021
As we head into 2021, the world of foodservice remains in unprecedented territory as we collectively deal with the immediate and long-lasting impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. While many unknowns linger as the world anxiously awaits an end to the virus, we do know that those who demonstrate the most versatility in response to industry, consumer and cultural shifts are best set to succeed in the coming year. Read ahead for Technomic’s expert predictions to better equip yourself for what’s to come and how to prepare for a post-pandemic world.
1. The Road to Recovery Steadies
Foodservice will experience the start of a financial recovery in 2021, but sales results across segments will be a mixed bag. Limited-service restaurants will turn...
Consumers Likely to Continue Increased Usage of Takeout and Delivery
With indoor dining restaurant traffic significantly curtailed due to COVID-19 restrictions and concerns, the availability of takeout and delivery options became more important for consumers and restaurants. Many foodservice operators began offering these options recently, and consumers have increased their usage of takeout and delivery.
According to the National Restaurant Association, the uptick in takeout and delivery frequency was visible across each of the three major dayparts in recent months. The Association reported that 66% of consumers said they ordered takeout or delivery for dinner last week. That is up from 58% during the last week of February.
The trend was similar for lunch. About 47% of consumers ordered takeout or delivery for lunch last week, a level that has...
Technomic's Take: What’s to Come in 2021
It’s not easy to forecast the future when the ground keeps shifting underneath. The foodservice industry has had to be more nimble than ever this past year, and everyone is eager to bounce back and embrace a clear sense of normalcy. Yet several big questions loom large: Is a COVID-19 vaccine on the horizon soon? Which areas of the country will recover quickest? And when will consumers feel comfortable about dining indoors again?
Despite the many ambiguities that exist, Technomic's outlook for the industry remains optimistic. Up-to-the-minute strategies are positioning foodservice segments to kick off a wider resurgence through 2021. Optimizing the menu, directly...
The COVID-19 Pandemic Causes Eating Patterns in America to Take a Sharp Turn
Annually, The NPD Group collects a year’s worth of data from its daily tracking of how U.S. consumers eat away from and in home and compiles the topline trend into a report that’s been called "Eating Patterns in America" for the last 35 years. This year’s recently released Eating Patterns in America captures how in mid-March, the daily rhythms of consumers’ lives, including their eating patterns, were suddenly disrupted by the COVID-19 outbreak.
“With mandated shelter-at-home and restaurant dine-in restrictions across most of the country during the pandemic, we have had few options other than to prepare most of our meals at home,” says David Portalatin, NPD food industry advisor and author of Eating Patterns in America. “Working from home, schooling at home, and preparing...
Burger King, Tim Hortons, and Popeyes to Modernize Its Drive Thru Experience
Restaurant Brands International Inc. announced that it is modernizing the drive-thru experience at more than 10,000 Burger King and Tim Hortons locations, with Popeyes beginning its own rollout later this year. More than 40,000 digital screens are being installed with powerful 'predictive selling' technology, integration with restaurant loyalty programs and the ability for remote, contactless payment, reflecting the strategic importance and value of the drive thru experience to RBI's iconic restaurant brands.
"Our guests have sought out our drive-thru lanes for our iconic food and beverages throughout the COVID-19 pandemic – even in the face of mandated dining room closures around the world," said Jose Cil, CEO of RBI. "We believe strongly that it is time to...
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