Restaurant Industry Continues Slow Recovery as States Reopen

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As more states lifted bans on on-premises dining, transactions at major US restaurant chains continued to improve in the week ended May 17, down 21% from the prior-year period, registering a small gain from a 23% decline the week before and marking the fifth consecutive week of improvement, according to The NPD Group. Major quick-service… read more

Sysco Sees Restaurant Recovery Accelerating

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More than 17% of restaurants closed permanently or long-term in 2020, according to the National Restaurant Association. Sysco has worked with the organization to lobby for restaurant relief and guide operators through the process of applying for aid. “We were the first to offer educational webinars to our independent customers on how they can access… read more

Cracker Barrel’s Revitalized Menu Marries Tradition and Innovation

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Cracker Barrel’s culture is rooted in heritage, but that doesn’t mean tradition can’t be reimagined. The commitment to innovation was on full display in 2020 as the 663-unit brand released a revamped dinner menu, diversified its family meal deals, and introduced alcohol for the first time in its 51-year history. Cammie Spillyards-Schaefer, vice president of… read more

Restaurants and Hotels Draw $18B in PPP Loans, the Highest in any Industry

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Restaurants and hotels have landed more than $18 billion in loans under the current version of the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), or 18% of all the dollars okayed to date, making the hospitality industry the leading borrower by a considerable margin. Data released by the U.S. Small Business Administration (SBA), the administrator of the PPP,… read more

When Normalcy Returns, don’t Expect Customers to Shift Completely Back to in-house Dining: Delivery has Become an Essential Growth Driver

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Restaurant operators say the year of pandemic-related shutdowns has changed habits and preferences. And those changing consumer trends are reshaping the industry, from the way restaurants operate, to their dependence on off-premise and the design of brick-and-mortar locations. As the COVID vaccine reaches more people and the economy settles into a new post-pandemic sense of… read more

The Reupped Legislation from the Original 2020 RESTAURANTS Act would Distribute Grants of up to $10 Million to Small Restaurants and Restaurant Groups

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After Congress reintroduced the RESTAURANTS Act to provide long-term relief to restaurants as a bipartisan, bicameral effort, and the Senate separately passed the budget resolution amendment for restaurant industry relief during the week of Feb. 4, the $25 billion RESTAURANTS Act is one step closer to passing in Congress after the House Small Business Committee… read more

IHOP Issues IOUs for National Pancake Day to Cut Down on Crowds During Pandemic

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Today is not only Mardi Gras or Fat Tuesday; it’s also National Pancake Day when IHOP customers are normally treated to a free short stack of the family-dining chain’s buttermilk pancakes. But this year, realizing that a global pandemic is no time to invite throngs of people into its more than 1,600 restaurants looking for… read more

Fast-Casual Brand Works to Build Virtual Community Among Remote Workers

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Chipotle Mexican Grill Inc. has enhanced its remote-employee learning and personal development offerings to include Udemy for Business, an online, on-demand educational platform, the company said. The Newport Beach, Calif.-based fast-casual brand said all full-time restaurant support center employees, executive team directors, team directors, and field leaders have to Udemy, which offers more than 5,500… read more

Applebee’s Launches a Cheetos-Inspired Wings Brand

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The formation of Cosmic Wings, Applebee’s new delivery-only concept, is the confluence of three opportunities, says Scott Gladstone, vice president of strategy and development. The rise of delivery and growth of the wing category are no-brainers. But the third one, an exclusive partnership with Cheetos, is where Cosmic Wings most plants its flag. The virtual… read more

GLOBAL FOODSERVICE NEWS FEBRUARY 15, 2021 EDITION

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Brewer will be the next CEO at Walgreens, making her the only Black woman currently running a Fortune 500 company . . . . Starbucks Chief Operating Officer Rosalind Brewer is Leaving the Company in February Starbucks announced Tuesday the departure of its chief operating officer, Rosalind Brewer, at the end of February. Brewer will… read more