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MAFSI Barometer Reports Healthy Growth

Reps' report an acceleration of business activity to continue into the second quarter of 2011.

Sales of foodservice equipment and supplies for the first quarter of 2011 increased four percent compared to the same period in 2010, according to the Manufacturers Agents' Association for the Foodservice Industry. This level matched what reps had projected for the period and represents the second consecutive quarterly increase in sales reported by MAFSI members, following a five percent increase during the fourth quarter of 2010.

Reps remain optimistic this upward trend will continue, forecasting overall growth of 4.9 percent for the second quarter of 2011. Supporting this positive outlook is the fact that 64 percent of reps report more quoting activity and 46 percent report seeing more activity from consultants.

For the first quarter, MAFSI reported growth from all regions of North America, including 2.5 percent in the Midwest, 3.6 percent in the South, 4.2 percent in the West, 7.8 percent in the Northeast, and 3.5 percent in Canada.

Growth was steady across all product categories, including 3.0 percent in tabletop, 3.5 percent in furnishings, 4.0 percent in supplies, and 4.2 percent in equipment.