TORONTO — Canadian foodservice operators are exercising cautious optimism, according to Canadian Restaurant and Foodservices Association’s (CRFA) inaugural Restaurant Outlook Survey.Some 30 per cent of restaurant owners believe the next six months will bring improved same-store sales, but 52.5 per cent expect to maintain the same-sales growth rate in the period and two in 10 expect sales to expand at a slower pace.
Leading negative factors found to be impacting restaurant sales include: rising food costs (78 per cent), rising labour cost (66 per cent), the weak economy (54.8 per cent), sales taxes (37.9 per cent), tourist decline (34.2 per cent) and bad weather (32.9 per cent).
The negative factors led to flat sales in the second quarter. In fact, only 34 per cent of operators reported higher same-store sales in the second quarter of 2011 compared to last year, an equal number said their sales were lower and the remaining 32 per cent reported unchanged same-store sales.
The results are based on 427 completed survey reports of the second quarter and represent 4,826 establishments across Canada.