Foodservice Industrial Spending: Down 28% This Year, Up 7.3% in 2021

Aug. 27, 2020
Slow recovery will follow a disastrous 2020, according to projections from International Foodservice Manufacturers and Datassential.

To no one's surprise, 2020 will be a disastrous year for foodservice, with "industrial" spending down 28.4%, compared to initial 2020 projections. The sector will claw back with growth of 7.3% in calendar 2021, according to the International Foodservice Manufacturers Assn. (IFMA).

The projected 28.4% declined this year "ties directly to the impact of COVID-19 on consumer and operator spending behavior," says the report. U.S consumers are expected to spend an estimated $583 billion in foodservice in 2021 while operators are projected to spend $227 billion during that same time frame.

The forecast models were created in conjunction with Datassential, a foodservice research firm, and validated by IFMA’s Operator Advisory Councils, composed of senior executives across all segments of the foodservice industry.

Some of the key highlights from the segment projections (read the full report here) include:

  • Overall, the total restaurant category is projected to grow 7.4% in 2021 off of an annual decline of 28% in 2020.
  • Quick service restaurants (QSR), which have done significantly better overall, are expected to recover more than half of the spend the segment lost in 2020.
  • Full-service restaurant segments, including Midscale and Casual Dining, will not see the same rebound as QSR, growing only 3.7% and 4.7%, respectively. This comes off of declines of over 35% in 2020 for each segment, mostly due to limited delivery and off premise dining.
  • The On-Site segment as a whole is projected to grow 9.7% in 2021, off of a 30% decline in 2020.
  • On-Site segments Healthcare and Education are projected to recover substantial lost spend in 2021 while the Lodging, Recreation, and Business & Industry segments are projected to only recover a small portion of their lost 2020 spend.

The projections are based upon several key assumptions, including COVID-19 vaccine availability, domestic and international travel and government regulations/mandates. IFMA anticipates the projections will be revised in Q1 2021.

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