Restaurant and Catering Australia (R&CA) has released its 2019 Annual Benchmarking Report, showing that restaurants across the country may be forced to raise prices in order to survive.
“This year, we are seeing more restaurants struggle than ever before. There are a number of rising and additional costs that consumers don’t consider which are putting extreme financial pressure on restaurant owners,” says Wes Lambert, CEO of R&CA.
R&CA’s Industry Benchmark Survey was distributed to more than 15,000 food service establishments, with 656 business owners and senior managers providing responses.
The survey aimed to monitor key trends in business costs, profitability, labour, skills shortages, and the general business environment.
The café, restaurant, and catering business in Australia generates more than $37 billion in retail every year and employs 450,000 people. Ninety-two per cent of businesses in the sector are classified as small businesses, meaning they employ 19 people or less.
According to Wes, consumers should be prepared to pay more for food to help cover the rising costs.
“Food prices have soared as farmers combat the drought and costs such as rents, wages, and utility prices continue to rise. Finally, restaurant, café, and catering businesses are left to contend with the hefty chunk delivery platforms take out of the profit. It’s a battle that business owners are slowly losing,” he says.
“Convenience is obviously a strong driver for patrons, but it is important diners understand that restaurants will close if something doesn’t change soon.”
For more information, visit www.rca.asn.au/rca