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Consumer Trends

Cracker Barrel says it's winning back silver-haired fans without discouraging young newcomers

The highwayside family dining restaurant chain also said it is growing its share among value-conscious consumers.

Operations

Subway’s latest restaurant format is a fridge

The chain will use the high-tech vending machines to sell more sandwiches in places like airports and college campuses.

The sandwich giant says its restaurants’ same-store sales rose 8.4% in the third quarter, with September particularly strong.

Data from Placer.ai shows the burger chain’s traffic is beating the broader restaurant industry and its fast-food competitors. Economic downturns are traditionally good for the company.

Technomic’s Take: Baby Boomers are dining out less often as they’ve aged. That’s a potential problem for restaurants as population growth stagnates.

The pandemic undeniably led to consumers ordering restaurant delivery in record numbers. Now, as dining rooms have opened many consumers have headed back to their favorite eateries; still delivery remains a huge part of many restaurants’ business.

The Bottom Line: Sales at restaurants and bars have been outpacing that of retail for much of the year. Prices may be playing a role, but it’s not entirely clear.

Hospitality establishments can deduct their sales from what they owe the state, up to $70,000 per month. The break expires at the end of September.

The Bottom Line: The business is increasingly bifurcating. Fast-food restaurants are focused on speed and production. But demand for experiential dining remains high. Those in between may struggle.

More than eight in 10 consumers say they are cutting back on restaurant visits as evidence of spending shifts continues to grow.

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