Report Says Optimism is Emerging as Full-Service Restaurants Gain Traction
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Report Says Optimism is Emerging as Full-Service Restaurants Gain Traction

Report Says Optimism is Emerging as Full-Service Restaurants Gain Traction

A new report by Technomic finds a "cautious optimism" that the full-service restaurant segment is experiencing a turnaround and gaining traction in the marketplace. Technomic's 2018 Future of FSR Consumer Trend Report finds that while the segment isn't out of the woods, increased emphasis on value, off-premise sales, alcohol, and memorable away-from-home experiences is helping the category move in the right direction. It's positive news in a segment, which includes casual dining, that has faced its share of challenges over the past few years.

"Following a year in which the total unit count for Top 500 casual-dining chains declined 1.5%, some brands are starting to see positive signs at the unit level," explains Charles Winship, senior research analyst at Technomic. "As the segment's turnaround continues, efforts will turn to cultivating sustainable, long-term growth strategies that avoid the issues that led to casual dining's downturn to begin with, such as weak value propositions, an oversupply of restaurants, and failing to evolve with consumers' dining habits."

Key takeaways from the report include:

  • 53% of consumers say they visit traditional casual-dining restaurants at least once a month
  • 38% of family-style consumers say they're more likely to visit a chain than an independent
  • 51% of upscale casual-dining restaurant consumers say they visit these restaurants to celebrate special occasions

Compiling findings from more than 1,600 consumer responses, as well as menu and industry data from the Ignite database, the comprehensive 2018 Future of FSR Consumer Trend Report serves as a guide for foodservice operators and suppliers to help them better understand how consumer patronage, attitudes, and preferences toward full-service restaurants are evolving and to identify key areas of opportunity.

Published: December 12th, 2018

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