Retail trade data released recently by the ABS showed that turnover for restaurants and cafes was up 11.8 per cent on last year albeit closure rates for the industry at an all-time high.
Nationwide from August 2011 – July 2012 restaurant, cafe and catering turnover was 7 per cent up on the same period in 2011 at $19.2 billion.
Turnover for the industry in July 2012 was up 11.8 per cent on July 2011 at $1.691 billion. This was brought about by an 11 per cent lift in NSW and a 30 per cent lift in ACT, SA and WA and a flat line result for Victoria.
Restaurant & Catering CEO John Hart commented that, "In contrast to results across the retail sector, the industry is still performing well from a revenue perspective but is suffering terribly under the weight of huge increases in the cost of wages."
Although these results show some growth a tough climate for restaurant and catering businesses still exists. Wage costs are estimated to be 45 per cent of revenue which makes the average restaurant, cafe or catering businesses profit margins low.
The industry is also seeing issues such as shortages of skilled workers, decreases in average spend and uncertainty of the effects of the pending Carbon Tax detracting from their bottom line.
Restaurant & Catering Australia is the peak body for the restaurant, café and catering industry.