Technomic / economic Impact Navigator (USA)

Shortages of non-food items persist

According to U.S. operators patio heaters are short in supply or priced over rate.
imago images / Frank Sorge
According to U.S. operators patio heaters are short in supply or priced over rate.

Of 500 U.S. operators (restaurant and beyond) surveyed by Technomic, 47% reported any type of shortage. According to the research experts, the shortage is driven largely by noncommercial operators seeking nonfood items like cleaning supplies and PPE. 

While the supplies are more readily available than earlier in the pandemic, the prices have climbed sharply, further cutting into operators’ slim margins. In May, Technomic had stated that over three-fifths of both restaurant and beyond restaurant operators were reporting product shortages, mainly in animal protein products. While protein shortages have largely dissipated, a fifth of operators, mostly FSRs that have had an increase in traffic since reopening to dine-in service, still report beef shortages. "Prices for beef are in fact falling, so it’s likely the cost of a certain type of beef product is an issue rather than an outright scarcity," comment the researchers. 

As U.S. restaurant operators seek to extend their outdoor dining season, patio heaters (banned for ecological reasons in other parts of the world, e.g. Germany or France) are the latest product to be in short supply or priced out of range for many operators as suppliers have upped the prices as demand soars. Hence, operators are looking to other solutions such as serving hot beverages and heartier meals, providing blankets and constructing individual shelters

About Technomic
Technomic is a research and consulting firm producing in-depth research focused on the foodservice industry. The company provides insights into consumer, industry and menu trends in the U.S., Canada and 23 countries around the world.
Economic Impact Navigator
This program provides a dynamic approach to monitoring the market and assessing the impact of changes in major economic conditions on operators and consumers alike. Technomic uses their decades of historical data paired with operator and consumer survey data to create foodservice industry forecasts and other ongoing deliverables to help its members anticipate market disruptors and be prepared for these shifts.