BusinessEating OutFood and DrinkHighlightsHospitalityNews

Modest Growth and Falling Frequency in the UK’s Eating and Dining Out Market

The latest data from Lumina Intelligence’s Eating and Drinking Out Panel (EDOP) reveals that the UK’s eating and drinking out market has experienced a modest increase in penetration and a fall in frequency in the 12 weeks ending in 19/02/2023. The average penetration has increased by just +2.0ppts year-on-year, hindered by the rising cost of living and train strike activity. Despite a reduction in COVID concerns and the World Cup, the market failed to gain the anticipated boost.

Consumers have been impacted by rising prices, leading to an +8% increase in average spend. However, the Pubs and bars segment has seen the largest increase in share occasions year-on-year (+1.3ppts), mainly due to recovery from a weak comparison. Pubs and bars have also benefitted from increased lunchtime patronage during the World Cup.

The data also shows that consumers are prioritising value for money. Lunch has enjoyed the largest increase in day-part share this year, with retail and catering channels both up by +0.6ppts year-on-year. Value for money has seen the most significant growth as a reason for choosing an establishment at breakfast (+3ppts) and lunch occasions (+2ppts), as consumers prioritise affordability when on the go.

The current market presents a challenge, as seen in our latest EDOP data, with a slight increase in penetration and a decrease in frequency,” observed Katherine Prowse, Lumina Intelligence’s Senior Insight Manager. “Despite this, the pubs and bars sector has shown its resilience.

The ongoing challenges in the market make it essential for operators to focus on meeting consumer demands for value for money and providing an experience that meets their changing needs.