Growth in quick-service restaurants outpaced full-service restaurants in most US counties

Over the last decade and a half, the number of quick-service restaurants operating in the U.S. grew by nearly 20 percent—from roughly 285,000 establishments in 2000 to over 340,000 in 2015. A recent USDA Economic Research Service (ERS) examination of changes in the U.S. food service industry found quick-service restaurants—eating places where food is ordered and paid for at a counter—even grew in number during the Great Recession, which lasted from December 2007 to June 2009. In comparison, the number of full-service restaurants—where wait staff take orders for food and beverages at tables and customers pay after eating—remained essentially unchanged during 2000-15. These differing growth rates resulted in quick-service restaurants taking the majority spot: as of 2015, quick-service restaurants accounted for 54 percent of all restaurants nationwide. Fifteen years earlier, quick-service restaurants accounted for just under 50 percent of the nation’s restaurants. Read more… 

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