Australia’s cafe and restaurant sector continues long-term growth trend

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 11th January 2012

Despite many of Australia’s retail sectors struggling with tough retail conditions, the latest Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) Retail Trade figures show ongoing growth for Australia’s cafe and restaurant sector.

The ABS’s latest figures, for November 2011, show that the café and restaurant sector saw a 0.1 per cent (seasonally adjusted) increase in turnover for the month. This is the sector’s ninth consecutive month of growth, according to the ABS, signalling a long term trend.

According to research by Sydney-based industry consultants DC Strategy, stronger growth is expected in both the café and restaurant industries over the next five years and beyond, as economic conditions improve.

A spokesperson for DC Strategy said, “Due to the discretionary nature of restaurant spending, the industry has faced difficult trading conditions as a result of the recent economic downturn. Low margins were squeezed as consumers sought value for money in food purchases.

“However, Australia’s love of quality gourmet coffee, which is seen as an affordable luxury, has resulted in strong growth in the café industry during this time. Results indicate that one billion cups of coffee are consumed in cafés each year in Australia and out-of-home consumption is on the rise.”