The Restaurant Industry Keeps Shrinking

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The late Café des Artistes. Photo: Shanna Ravindra

Some grim stats care of Nations Restaurant News today: 5,204 restaurants have closed since spring of 2009 (2,521 of them quick-service restaurants and 2,683 of them full-service restaurants). Independent operators were hit especially hard 5,093 of the closures were independents, while only 439 were chains. And theres also this: NPDs CREST research service reported that visits to restaurants in the United States declined by 3 percent for the 12 months ended in May 2010. Consumer spending at restaurants fell 1 percent in that same period, the first decline in dollars the firm has reported since it began tracking foodservice industry sales in 1976, NPD said.

U.S. restaurant count continues to fall [NRN]