Issue 20-69: Food Services and Drinking Places

April 23, 2020

Revenues generated in British Columbia’s food service and drinking places industry grew by 0.7% (seasonally adjusted) in February compared to January. Sales for the month were up in all establishment categories, except in limited-service eating places.

Compared to the same month in 2019, receipts of food services and drinking places were up by 5.2% (unadjusted) in February. The increase was driven by limited-service eating places (+5.5%). Notable increases were observed in special food services (+18.6%) and drinking places (+13.0%).

Nationally, sales in food services and drinking places fell (-0.1%) in February compared to the previous month. The decrease was led by full-service restaurants (-0.3%). Sales of special food services (-0.5%) also declined in the month. Drinking places (+1.5%) and limited-service eating places (+0.1%) saw larger sales in February.

Sales went down in four provinces and all territories in February, with the largest contributor to the national sales decrease being Ontario (-0.7%). The largest provincial declines were in New Brunswick (-0.8%), Ontario and Saskatchewan (-0.7%). British Columbia and Alberta (+0.5%) saw the largest provincial dollar increases in February.

Compared to February of last year, sales in food and drinking places were up 6.8%, with all industry subcategories seeing gains in the month. The increase was widespread, with all provinces except Newfoundland and Labrador (-0.1%), and the Yukon reporting higher sales in the month.

As most COVID-19 social distancing measures were not adopted until March, there is little impact of COVID-19 to the food and drinking services receipts for February.

Data Source: Statistics Canada