Britain’s top managed restaurant groups recorded 1% year-on-year growth in delivery and takeaway sales in December 2023, CGA by NIQ’s latest Hospitality at Home Tracker shows.
It is a seventh consecutive month of like-for-like growth and caps a year that saw restaurants revive deliveries and takeaways after a post-COVID decline. However, the 1% figure is unchanged from November and continues a slowdown towards the end of the year, from 6% and 4% in September and October. Growth has been generated by increases in menu prices rather than order volumes, which dropped year-on-year by 4% in December.
As was the case throughout 2023, direct-to-home sales were much stronger than takeaways. Deliveries achieved 6% growth in December, but takeaway and click-and-collect sales fell by 10% as more consumers migrated from collecting meals to delivery to the door.
Deliveries accounted for nearly two thirds (64%) of all restaurants’ orders in December, while takeaways were worth 36%. Combined, they attracted 14 pence in every pound spent with groups, while eat-in sales took 86 pence.
Karl Chessell, CGA by NIQ’s director – hospitality operators and food, EMEA, said: “It was encouraging to see restaurant groups steadily recover their delivery and takeaway sales in 2023 after an extended post-COVID lull. However, growth has slowed to well below the rate of inflation, and profit margins on deliveries remain tight for many businesses. These challenges are likely to continue for some time, but as cost pressures ease and consumers recover their spending confidence we can be cautiously optimistic that sales will pick up as we move deeper into 2024.”