Skip navigation
Golden Corral temporarily closes its 35 company-owned buffets, and some franchised units continue operating.

Golden Corral suspends company-owned buffets in wake of coronavirus

Brand shuts its 35 units; some franchised restaurant still operating

Golden Corral Corp. is suspending operations at 35 company-owned buffet units as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, the company said late Tuesday.

The Raleigh, N.C.-based family-dining buffet brand said, “Some franchise restaurants are still operating across the country in accordance with local and state mandates, while others have suspended operations.”

“It is truly an emotional and challenging time for our country," Lance Trenary, Golden Corral CEO, said at a virtual town hall meeting.

“The realities of the current situation have forced us to make difficult decisions,” Trenary said in a statement about the meeting. “We know these decisions are impacting the team members who we work shoulder to shoulder with every day."

The company said it has furloughed 2,290 team members, including restaurant workers, managers, field support and company support center employees.

Golden Corral franchised restaurants that continue to remain open will follow precautions that the company outlined earlier this month.

Those precautions include providing sanitizer stations throughout each restaurant, requiring employees to wash their hands every 20 minutes, sanitizing food preparation areas every 30 minutes and replacing serving utensils frequently.

“In markets with dining restrictions, operating Golden Corral restaurants offer carryout, curbside delivery or home delivery,” the company said.

Golden Corral, founded in 1973, has more than 480 restaurants in 40 states.

According to the Nation’s Restaurant News Top 200, Golden Corral had an estimated $1.7 billion in U.S. systemwide sales in the fiscal year ended December 2018.

Contact Ron Ruggless at [email protected]

Follow him on Twitter: @RonRuggless

For our most up-to-date coverage, visit the coronavirus homepage.

Hide comments


  • Allowed HTML tags: <em> <strong> <blockquote> <br> <p>

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.