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Foodservice industry sales to grow by 21 percent in 2021: Technomic forecast

Next year’s industry sales will remain shy of 2019 levels, however

Technomic has revised its U.S. foodservice industry sales forecast for 2020 and 2021 taking into consideration the many facets of the ongoing pandemic. The larger foodservice industry, which includes restaurants, bars, caterers, contract foodservice, including business and industry, education and travel & leisure, could see sales decrease by $250B to $300B in 2020 on a 2019 base of $938B.

Under three different scenarios, Technomic’s forecast indicates Best Case, Middle Case and Worst Case.

In 2021, sales will increase by 21 percent compared to this year under a Middle Case scenario, but that figure would still reflect a decrease of 11 percent from 2019 levels, according to Ignite data. Quick-service restaurants have been the most resilient and performed the best, notes Technomic. Full-service restaurants, bars, and the B&I, travel & leisure, and education segments continue to struggle, however.

Technomic also found that the foodservice industry’s prospects are interlinked with medical advances, including finding a vaccine for COVID-19 and progress in treatment and therapeutics.

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“Restrictions are wreaking havoc, especially on the segments that depend upon on-premise consumption,” said Joe Pawlak, managing principal at Technomic. “What we are seeing is continued decline for the remainder of the year but aggressive growth in 2021. However, it will still take longer to fully bounce back, and we’ll be updating our forecasts as circumstances continue to shift and evolve.”

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