This industry has slowly recovered from the recession over the past five years as consumers increased their spending on eating out.
Full-service chain restaurants operate with the increasingly competitive food service sector. Major chains such as Darden Restaurants, which operates Olive Garden and Red Lobster and Cracker Barrel Old Country Store, compete against independent full-service restaurants, major fast food chains, as well as a range of other establishments that offer meals to eat in or take away. In response to greater competition, full-service restaurant chains have invested in laborsaving technology to cut down on costs and have redesigned restaurant layouts to create a more modern ambiance.
The industry's run of slow and steady growth is projected to continue over the next five years. Consumers will increase their spending at restaurants as the economy continues to improve. However, the industry will be weighed down by increased competition from a growing number of fast casual restaurants that serve high-quality food at reasonable prices and have more nimble business models. Major full-service restaurant chains will increasingly look abroad to emerging economies for growth.