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Why Q1 may have been a mirage


Consumers started trading down at the end of 2022 in response to higher menu pricing. Now, they’re taking things up a notch – more aggressively seeking deals and discounts to use restaurants.

New data from Circana finds that consumer use of deals at restaurants grew by 8% year-over-year in Q1. Consumers’ inflation fatigue is also evidenced by April’s slowing sales growth – the industry’s weakest performance since July 2022 and its second-softest month of growth in over two years, according to Black Box Intelligence.

In other words, consumers are proving they simply don’t want to pay as much for eating out as they have been doing for quite some time, including for the traditionally lower-price point quick-service segment, where menu prices remain 8.2% higher over last year.

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