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Takeaway customers think of their health

With lockdowns and restrictions meaning that takeaways have been the only option to eat ‘out’, the segment has grown during the pandemic. But, as the restrictions lift, are we thinking about our health?

According to CGA, takeaway sales in June were 225% higher than in June 2019 - a drop on growth figures of 345% in April and 273% in May, reflecting the return of the majority of restaurants and pubs for the first full month of indoor service of 2021 in June. While some consumers have opted to start eating out again, deliveries and takeaways accounted for 35% of managed operators’ total sales in June, with eat-in contributing the remainder (65%).

The Hospitality at Home Tracker shows 2021-on-2019 growth in groups’ delivery sales was more than four times as high as takeaways. The emergence of third party ordering platforms in recent years means the volume of deliveries now exceeds that of takeaways and click and collect orders.

“The restaurant and pub delivery market has flourished during the lockdowns of the last 16 months, and while growth has slowed from the period of forced closures, it is going to stay a very big part of managed groups’ sales,” says Karl Chessell, CGA’s business unit director – hospitality operators and food, EMEA.

“We can expect to see more people revert to eating and drinking out now that COVID restrictions have been eased, but some consumers will not want to give up their new order-from-home habits. Juggling the three elements of eat-in, take-out and third-party delivery is going to be a big operational priority over the remainder of 2021 and beyond. Those that get it right can maximise this revenue stream without diluting dine in sales.”

Since those figures were released, KPMG released a study which found that a third of respondents hadn’t ordered takeaway in the past year, but that those that had were willing to order more if they were given healthier meal options and more environmentally friendly packaging and delivery.

The report found that consumers increasingly wanted more health-conscious eating and drinking options and suggested that, operators could help customers make informed decisions through partnerships with, for example, fitness and lifestyle apps.

Linda Ellett, UK Head of Consumer Markets, Leisure and Retail, KPMG in the UK, said: “Health and wellness represents a number of opportunities for brands to differentiate themselves from competitors, win over new and existing customers and attract talent.”

Takeaways used to be thought of an indulgent treats, but after repeated restaurant and pub closures bought eating out into the home, they have become more frequent. And with that, the need for them to be just a bit healthier.


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