Gasoline Savings Fuel Foodservice Expenditures

March 31, 2015

The latest from The Food Institute...

Looking at the latest personal expenditure data from the government, in 2014’s final quarter, The Food Institute found that  consumers spent nine percent less than the prior year on gasoline for their vehicles than the year before – or about $33 billion on an annualized basis. At the same time, however, they were apparently driving to restaurants much more as expenditures at eating and drinking places rose 7.4 percent -- about $39 billion on annualized basis. That 7.4 percent increase well outpaces the 2.4 percent annualized inflation rate for food away from home during the same period.

Lonk to BEA Consumer Expenditure Data

Unfortunately, retail food businesses have not benefitted from those gasoline savings, as expenditures for food and beverages rose 2.1 percent in the fourth quarter on an annualized basis even less than the 2.4 percent annualized inflation rate for food-at-home in the fourth quarter.  

So it looks like the restaurant industry is gaining in the battle for share of stomach.