During the pandemic, there has been a major shift in the food industry. The biggest shift is that, whilst restaurants have seen a drop in demand due to closures and restrictions, more consumers are choosing takeout and delivery services.
In a study carried out by the National Restaurant Association (NRA), many restaurants have had to adapt their business models to meet the changing demands. And, it’s predicted that this trend will continue in the winter months – possibly even longer.
Who is most likely to order food deliveries?
Although younger people are more likely to order take outs normally, during the pandemic, it’s older consumers that have increased their spending in this area.
The survey shows that 60% of Baby Boomers ordered takeout or delivery for dinner in the last week. Additionally, those in the Generation X group saw a big rise, with 66% ordering in the last week – this is significantly higher than the pre-pandemic numbers.
Younger adults in the Millenial and Generation Z age groups did order takeaways at higher rates than older people. But, the levels were similar to those before the pandemic, as these services were already popular with these groups.
What are people ordering?
The biggest winner is evening meals, with 66% of the surveyed consumers saying they had ordered a delivery or takeout for dinner in the last week. In the last week of February, just before the pandemic, this figure was 58%.
The figures for lunchtime meals mirrored this, with 47% of consumers ordering lunch in the last week, which is 10% higher than earlier in the year.
The biggest growth, however, was seen in breakfast orders. As coffee shops and cafes have been forced to shut or offer reduced services, more consumers have been ordering food and drinks in the morning – last week, 35% of people reported ordering breakfast.
Companies like UberEats and Deliveroo have had concerns over their business models for some years. However, in light of these changes, it’s believed that, in the future, changes can be made in order to ensure struggling businesses aren’t pushed out.