Strong Performance by Steak in Table Service Restaurants in 2012


According to GuestMetrics, based on its proprietary database of POS transactions of more than $8 billion dollars in transactions and more than 250 million checks from restaurants and bars across the United States, steak achieved one of the largest share gains in the food category in 2012, only behind chicken wings, pizza, burgers, and tacos. 

“In analyzing the 64 percent of table service restaurant sales that come from food, we see that steak had a strong year in 2012,” says Bill Pecoriello, CEO of GuestMetrics LLC. “Based on our data, steak revenues were up about 3 percent, the net result of the number of steaks ordered being up 1 percent despite prices being 2 percent higher than 2011 levels, likely at least partially due to the drought last year. Given steak has one of the highest average price points of any food item, the uptick in steak sales should be particularly beneficial to restaurant operators.” According to data from GuestMetrics, the average price for steak in restaurants is $23, which is only behind lamb ($33), halibut ($32), duck ($27), and lobster ($24), all of which saw their sales contract in 2012.

“In further analyzing the steak category, the top three types sold in on-premise in terms of their share were sirloin at 19 percent of steak revenues, ribeye at 17 percent, and filet at 16 percent,” says Peter Reidhead, VP of Strategy and Insights at GuestMetrics. “However, in terms of the growth seen in the steak category in 2012, this was driven almost exclusively by strength among ribeye, filet, and veal, while sirloin sales actually contracted from levels seen in 2011.” 

“Additionally, given the fact the average price of those three types of steak are well above the overall steak average with ribeye at $29, filet at $35, and veal at $36, dialing up the focus on these steaks should be an especially attractive value proposition for restaurant operators to consider,” says Brian Barrett, president of GuestMetrics. “The only types of mainstream steak that have a materially higher average price point in on-premise are ossobuco at $37 and porterhouse at $51. Given steak prices were up 5 percent in December against the prior year, we will be monitoring closely the impact this has on overall steak sales as we progress further into 2013.”     

News and information presented in this release has not been corroborated by FSR, Food News Media, or Journalistic, Inc.

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