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Food services and drinking places, December 2018

Released: 2019-02-19

Food services and drinking places sales — Canada

$6.2 billion

December 2018

0.9% increase

(monthly change)

Food services and drinking places sales — N.L.

$71.8 million

December 2018

1.7% increase

(monthly change)

Food services and drinking places sales — P.E.I.

$23.0 million

December 2018

2.0% increase

(monthly change)

Food services and drinking places sales — N.S.

$145.2 million

December 2018

4.2% increase

(monthly change)

Food services and drinking places sales — N.B.

$105.5 million

December 2018

1.6% increase

(monthly change)

Food services and drinking places sales — Que.

$1,169.7 million

December 2018

1.4% increase

(monthly change)

Food services and drinking places sales — Ont.

$2,447.7 million

December 2018

0.9% increase

(monthly change)

Food services and drinking places sales — Man.

$173.9 million

December 2018

-1.0% decrease

(monthly change)

Food services and drinking places sales — Sask.

$160.6 million

December 2018

0.1% increase

(monthly change)

Food services and drinking places sales — Alta.

$810.2 million

December 2018

0.9% increase

(monthly change)

Food services and drinking places sales — B.C.

$1,064.4 million

December 2018

0.3% increase

(monthly change)

Food services and drinking places sales — Y.T.

$6.5 million

December 2018

-3.8% decrease

(monthly change)

Food services and drinking places sales — N.W.T.

$9.3 million

December 2018

-1.1% decrease

(monthly change)

Food services and drinking places sales — Nvt.

$3.7 million

December 2018

6.9% increase

(monthly change)

On a seasonally adjusted basis, sales in the food services and drinking places subsector increased 0.9% to $6.2 billion in December. Higher sales were reported in full-service restaurants (+1.3%), limited-service restaurants (+1.0%) and drinking places (+2.7%). Sales decreased in special food services (-2.7%).

Chart 1  Chart 1: Sales at food services and drinking places
Sales at food services and drinking places

Higher sales were reported in every province except Manitoba, which decreased 1.0% in December. The highest gains were in Ontario (+0.9%), Quebec (+1.4%) and Alberta (+0.9%). Sales rose in Nova Scotia (+4.2%) following a decrease in November of 3.8%. British Columbia also posted an increase (+0.3%), continuing its upward trend for the eighth consecutive month.

Further information can be found in the dashboard entitled "Food Services and Drinking Places Sales." This web application provides access to data on the sales of food services and drinking places for Canada and by province and territory. This dynamic application allows users to compare provincial and territorial data through interactive maps and charts.

Subsector posts strong sales in 2018

The figures in this section are based on unadjusted (that is, not seasonally adjusted) estimates.

Annual sales of food services and drinking places totalled $72.1 billion in 2018, up 5.2% from 2017. This sales increase coincided with growth in the Canadian economy and low unemployment throughout 2018. Menu prices were also higher in 2018, with prices for food purchased from restaurants up 3.8% and prices for alcoholic beverages up 3.4%.

Sales increased at full-service restaurants (+5.4%), limited-service restaurants (+5.1%), special food services (+5.3%) and drinking places (+2.2%) in 2018 compared with 2017. Sales were up in nine provinces, led by Ontario (+5.7%), British Columbia (+7.9%) and Quebec (+5.2%). Newfoundland and Labrador was the only province where sales did not increase (0.0%).

Sales in full-service restaurants increased by $1.6 billion (+5.4%) from a year earlier to $31.9 billion in 2018. Sales were up in nine provinces, led by Ontario (+5.6%), British Columbia (+9.6%) and Quebec (+4.7%). New Brunswick (-0.8%) was the only province where sales decreased.

Limited-service eating places, also known as fast food or quick-service restaurants, reported an increase of $1.6 billion (+5.1%) from 2017, totalling $32.0 billion in 2018. Every province recorded sales growth in the fast food industry, with the highest increases in Ontario (+5.3%), British Columbia (+7.5%) and Quebec (+5.2%).

Limited-service eating places (44.4%) and full-service restaurants (44.2%) represented the largest shares of sales in the food services and drinking places subsector.

Sales in special food services, which includes food service contractors, caterers and mobile food services, rose 5.3% to $5.7 billion in 2018. The largest increases in dollar terms were in Ontario (+9.0%), Quebec (+6.9%) and British Columbia (+5.6%). The largest decrease was in Alberta (-5.5%).

Sales in drinking places and bars increased 2.2% to $2.5 billion in 2018.


  Note to readers

All data in this release are seasonally adjusted and expressed in current dollars unless otherwise noted. For information on seasonal adjustment, see Seasonally adjusted data – Frequently asked questions.

For information on trend-cycle data, see the StatCan Blog and Trend-cycle estimates – Frequently asked questions.

Data for the current reference month are preliminary. Usually, unadjusted data are revised for the two previous months, and seasonally adjusted data are revised for the three previous months.

Contact information

For more information, or to enquire about the concepts, methods or data quality of this release, contact us (toll-free 1-800-263-1136; 514-283-8300; STATCAN.infostats-infostats.STATCAN@canada.ca) or Media Relations (613-951-4636; STATCAN.mediahotline-ligneinfomedias.STATCAN@canada.ca).

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