With the COVID-19 pandemic spreading throughout the United States, more people working from home, and social distancing guidance in place, U.S. restaurant customer transactions declined by 8% in the week ending March 15 compared to a year ago, according to the NPD Group. Quick-service restaurant (QSR) chain customer transactions, which represent the bulk of U.S. restaurant transactions, declined by 7% in the week. The already challenged full-service segments of casual dining and midscale/family dining realized transaction declines of 22% and 24%, respectively.

“The U.S. restaurant industry situation remains very fluid, and the most recent week read of customer transactions reflect performance before mandated on-premise restaurant closures were implemented in multiple states,” said David Portalatin, NPD food industry advisor and author of Eating Patterns in America, in a press release. “Some of the areas I’ll be watching closely in the coming weeks are delivery capacity, the pizza category, and third-party delivery platforms, like DoorDash, Grubhub, and Uber Eats.”

IFT Weekly Newsletter

Rich in industry news and highlights, the Weekly Newsletter delivers the goods in to your inbox every Wednesday.

Subscribe for free