nina | December 31st, 2012 - 9:00 am

The National Restaurant Association is predicting record sales for the restaurant industry in 2013, with a side of job creation.

In the group’s 2013 Restaurant Industry Forecast, the NRA predicts that the restaurant industry will see a more than $660 billion in sales next year, up 3.8 percent over this year, even though wholesale food prices will likely continue to climb throughout the year.

The report cites pent-up demand as a driver of the growth, with a reported two out of five consumers saying they would like to eat out more often. As the economy improves, the NRA says, they may do just that.

And, for the 14th straight year, restaurant industry employment will outpace employment overall, the NRA predicts. This year, restaurant employment grew at a rate of 3.0 percent, a little more than twice the national rate of 1.4 percent. Next year, the NRA predicts an industry employment growth rate of 2.4 percent—with 14.4 million people working in restaurants by 2023. The downside? Recruitment and retention could become more difficult.

Source:  meatingplace.com; 12.27.2012

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