It’s no secret that the restaurant industry has not been faring so well since the 2008 recession, but not all restaurants have been as bad off as others. Chain restaurants have apparently fared much better than independent restaurants, and actually gained restaurants locations since 2009.
A new study by the NPD Group confirms that from 2008 to 2011, the number of restaurants visits in the United States dropped from 62.7 billion to 60.6 billion. The report went deeper to show that 87% of the loss in restaurants business occurred at independent restaurants, even though before the recession only a little over a quarter of all restaurants visits took place at independent establishments.
To add to the discrepancy, since 2009 restaurant chains now control 61% of the industry, while independent restaurants account for 27% of total restaurant visits. Overall, the number of independent restaurants in the United States decreased by a whopping 7,158. Chain restaurants however increase by 4,511.
The study further showed that higher-end restaurants in large urban areas have continued to fare well throughout the recession, while the smaller restaurants felt the brunt of the recession.
Supporting mom & pop restaurants is more crucial at this time than ever before. While the economy is still recovering, these small restaurants continue to feel the pressure of being squeezed out by chain restaurants and high fees across the board. With events like restaurant week urging consumers to return to local establishments, hopefully small restaurants can rebound and begin to turn the tide against large chains.
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