Sales of foodservice equipment and supplies increased by 9% in the third quarter of 2022, per the Business Barometer published by the Manufacturers’ Agents Association for the Foodservice Industry.
This represents the first time in six quarters, though, that sales increases were in the single digits. Sales growth peaked in the second quarter of 2021 when they increased by 19.1% per MAFSI.
While still representing a healthy increase, the results from the third quarter of 2022 could be an indication that supply-and-demand-related challenges could be coming into balance, at least where foodservice equipment and supplies are concerned. MAFSI members project an 8% increase in sales of foodservice equipment and supplies for the fourth quarter of 2022. In previous quarters, the study was measuring growth influenced by pandemic-related factors, MAFSI points out. The study now, though, is measuring the growth on growth.
Inflation is undoubtedly a part of the equation, too. MAFSI points out, though, no industry-wide definitive measurement of foodservice equipment and supply inflation exists but reports most price increases over the past year have cumulatively been in the range of 10% to 20%, or higher in some cases. For that reason, MAFSI notes that it would not be surprising if “real growth in terms of unit sales, which very few companies actually report, has fallen into negative or at best, very minimal growth.”
Looking at third-quarter sales increases by product type, tabletop led the way at 14.2%, followed by furniture at 9.6%, equipment at 8.4% and supply items at 7.7%.
In terms of consultant activity, 25% of reps reported an increase in this area during the third quarter compared to the second quarter of 2022. In addition, 19% of reps reported a decrease and 56% indicated no change in this area. Also, 29% of reps report an increase in quoting in the third quarter compared to the second quarter of 2022. In addition, 32% report a decrease in quoting activity and 39% reported no change.