The National Restaurant Association's Senior Vice President of Research & Knowledge Hudson Riehle summarizes the newly released 2011 Restaurant Industry Forecast.
By Derrek J. Hull, Blogger-in-Chief
Restaurant industry sales are expected to reach a record $604 billion and post positive growth in 2011 after a three-year period of negative real sales growth, according to the National Restaurant Association 2011 Restaurant Industry Forecast. Sales are projected to advance 3.6 percent over 2010 sales.
"As the national economy is slowly improving, the restaurant industry is climbing out of its most challenging period in decades to post positive real sales growth in 2011. As in 2010, restaurant industry job growth is expected to outpace the national economy this year, emphasizing the importance of industry to the nation's economy,” said Hudson Riehle, senior vice president of the Research and Knowledge Group for the National Restaurant Association.
Sales at the nation's 960,000 restaurants represent 4 percent of the U.S. gross domestic product, and restaurant employees comprise nearly 10 percent of the U.S. workforce. Restaurants are the nation's second-largest private sector employer with 12.8 million employees.
Quickservice restaurants are projected to post sales of $167.7 billion this year, a gain of 3.3 percent over 2010. Sales at fullservice restaurants are projected to reach $194.6 billion in 2011, an increase of 3.1 percent in current dollars over 2010.
The industry will add jobs at a rate of 2.4 percent, compared with the 1.8 percent expected for the national economy. In the next decade, the industry will add 1.3 million positions.