Increase in Traffic Not Enough to Help Restaurant Operator’s Bottom Line

Published August 26, 2022

With warmer weather, patios open and pent-up demand, a greater share of Canadians purchased lunch, dinner or a snack from a restaurant once a week or more in July compared to June. According to Restaurants Canada’s latest REACT survey:

  • The share of Canadians who purchased lunch from a restaurant once a week or more rose to 22% in July, as more frequent visits from Ontario and Quebec offset declines in Atlantic Canada.
  • The share of Canadians who purchased dinner from a restaurant once a week or more rose two-points to 35% in July. The increase was driven by 18 to 34 year olds, where 46% purchased dinner from a restaurant once a week or more, up from 41% in June.
  • The share of Canadians who purchased a coffee or snack from a restaurant once a week or more in July rose to 25% — the fourth consecutive monthly increase.

Despite a greater share of Canadians visiting restaurants, rising operating expenses resulted in 29% of restaurants operating at a loss and another 22% were just breaking even in July. Given the summer months are considered the peak season for foodservice sales, that half of all restaurants are operating at a loss or just breaking even is alarming. As foodservice sales are expected to slow due to rising prices and lower consumer confidence, it will put more financial pressure on restaurant operators in the coming months.

Respondents Chart

For more information:

REACT Survey

Restaurant Outlook Survey Q2 2022

Restaurants Canada Digital

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