The NPD Group: Off-Premise Dinning Modes Grow Despite 32% Traffic Decline in Canadian Foodservice Industry

Toronto, ON, May 15, 2020 – As the country continues to grapple with widespread closures and social isolation restrictions due to COVID-19, the Canadian Foodservice industry experienced a -32% decline in traffic for March 2020 (five weeks ending April 7, 2020) reports The NPD Group. The decline is a direct result of the on-premise dining restrictions that were implemented throughout the country in mid-March. Restaurant operators have been forced to ramp up off-premise modes such as carry-out, delivery, and drive-thru in an effort offset the losses during this period of unprecedented disruption.

The impact was felt most in the full service restaurant space, where traffic was down -54% during March 2020. The QSR segment was also negatively impacted as traffic slipped by -27%, according to NPD’s CREST®, which tracks daily restaurant usage across Canada.

While on-premise dinning is no longer an option, consumers have been quick to adopt off-premise dinning modes such as delivery, takeout, and drive-thru. Delivery channel orders grew by +22% in March compared to a year ago, with digital orders accounting for 72% of total delivery traffic. Third party service providers accounted for almost 8 out of 10 of these digital delivery orders. While this increase is significant, the delivery channel represented only 4% of overall restaurant traffic prior to COVID-19. Delivery share has now increased to 8%, but it still represents a relatively small portion of overall volume, and as a result, will likely not be enough to offset losses in the broader market.

“The impact of COVID-19 on the Canadian restaurant industry has been wide-spread and immediate,” said Vince Sgabellone, NPD foodservice industry analyst. “These declines represent a loss of over $2 billion in restaurant sales and over 200 million customer visits. The situation is very 2 challenging, particularly for smaller operators and independent restaurants, many of which have since made the decision to shut their doors permanently.”

With all but essential workers sheltering at home, and school and shopping trips effectively cut to zero, the lunch daypart was impacted the most during this time, declining by -39%. On the other hand, the number of restaurant meals consumed at home has increased significantly and now makes up the largest share of the market at 44%.

“This ongoing trend of people working, schooling, shopping and entertaining from home could have long term implications for restaurants since many rely on drop in visits, especially at lunch, in order to sustain their operations,” said Sgabellone.


Related Content
Understanding the Canadian Cannabis User
Understanding the Canadian Cannabis User

New Service Offering Provides Foodservice Operators with an In-Depth Understanding of the Eating Habits of Canadian Cannabis Users

Top Foodservice Operators Recognized at the 2018 Restaurant Realities Redefined Summit
Top Foodservice Operators Recognized at the 2018 Restaurant Realities Redefined Summit

On October 2 at the annual NPD Foodservice Summit in Toronto The NPD Group recognized six top operators in the foodservice space.

Canadians’ Hygge State of Mind
Canadians’ Hygge State of Mind

Soon Canadians will seek new ways to stay warm and cozy in their homes. It’s “hygge,” and it’s becoming a force in Canada’s home and housewares industry.

Unboxing Meal Kit Delivery Services in Canada
Unboxing Meal Kit Delivery Services in Canada

The meal kit industry in Canada has roughly doubled since 2014 and is expected to exceed $400 million in the next year as the segment continues to experience dramatic growth.


Press Contact

Erick Bauer
647-723-7736
Erick.Bauer@npd.com

The NPD Group, Inc.
900 West Shore Road
Port Washington, NY 11050

Want more?

Complete this form to hear from NPD.


Newsletter

Subscribe and get key market trends and insights relevant to your industry each month.

We will not sell your information. View Privacy Notices. | Cookie Settings

Follow Us

© 2020 The NPD Group, Inc.