After months of pandemic-related restrictions, catering businesses in China are beginning to see a resurgence in sales. The country has been working to optimize its pandemic prevention and control measures since late December, and the results are starting to show. With the government ending the requirement for mass testing and people no longer needing to show their health codes when entering public places like shopping malls and restaurants, it seems as though things are finally starting to return to normal.
During the Spring Festival holiday from Jan 21 to 27, many restaurants in Beijing saw a surge in sales revenue compared with the same period of 2022. This is great news for restaurant owners who have been struggling to keep their businesses afloat during the pandemic. The surge in sales is also an indication that people are eager to return to some sense of normalcy and resume their pre-pandemic activities.
The lifting of pandemic-related restrictions is not only good news for the catering industry but also for the wider economy. With people returning to restaurants, it is likely that other industries, such as the transportation and entertainment sectors, will also see an increase in business. As more people begin to venture out of their homes and spend money, the economy can begin to recover from the damage caused by the pandemic.
It is worth noting, however, that the lifting of restrictions does not mean that the pandemic is over. While the number of cases in China has been declining, there is still a risk of new outbreaks, and it is important that people continue to follow basic pandemic prevention and control measures, such as wearing masks and maintaining social distancing.
The resurgence of catering businesses in China is a positive development, but it is important that businesses and individuals remain vigilant to prevent a resurgence of the virus. With continued adherence to pandemic prevention and control measures, the country can continue on its path towards recovery and return to a sense of normalcy.
The resurgence of catering businesses in China is a welcome development, and one that signals a return to normalcy after months of pandemic-related restrictions. The lifting of restrictions will not only benefit the catering industry but also the wider economy, and is a positive sign that the country is on its way to recovery. It is important, however, that people remain vigilant and continue to follow pandemic prevention and control measures to prevent a resurgence of the virus.
The Lunar New Year of the Rabbit was celebrated with great enthusiasm and strong consumer sentiments in China. Despite the ongoing pandemic, people flocked to restaurants to enjoy sumptuous dishes and spend time with their loved ones. The figures of some restaurants have even exceeded those of the Spring Festival holiday in pre-COVID-19 times, indicating a strong recovery of the catering industry in China.
According to a spokesperson from catering giant Judehuatian Group, diners swarmed into the group’s time-honored brand restaurants including Hongbinlou, Kaorouwan, and E’meijiujia on Jan 21, the Chinese New Year’s Eve. All the hall tables were occupied by around 10 o’clock in the morning, with many people waiting in line for seats. This shows a strong desire among the Chinese people to celebrate the Lunar New Year with their loved ones and to indulge in traditional festive foods.
Cuihualou, another time-honored restaurant in the Chinese capital, sold nearly 100 takeout meal packages on Spring Festival eve, marking a significant increase of 60 percent year-on-year. This is an indication of how people have adapted to the pandemic and are still finding ways to celebrate and enjoy the holiday. Wang Peixin, the general manager of the restaurant, said that during this year’s weeklong Spring Festival holiday, the turnover of Cuihualou was about 30 percent higher than the same period in 2022. The restaurant almost reached the upper limit of its seating capacity from the first day to the fifth day of the Lunar New Year, and the waiting time also rose to an average of 80 minutes.
The surge in sales revenue during the Lunar New Year holiday is a good sign for the catering industry in China, which has been hit hard by the pandemic. The government’s optimization of pandemic prevention and control measures in late December, including the ending of mass testing requirements and the elimination of health code checks for entering public places like shopping malls and restaurants, has helped businesses to bounce back.
The success of time-honored brand restaurants such as Hongbinlou, Kaorouwan, and E’meijiujia, and Cuihualou indicates that traditional cuisine and local specialties are still in high demand among consumers. Moreover, the strong performance of the catering industry during the Lunar New Year holiday suggests that people are willing to spend money on dining out and enjoying traditional holiday foods, indicating a positive sign for the recovery of the catering industry in China.
The strong consumer sentiments and surge in sales revenue during the Lunar New Year holiday are indicative of the recovery of the catering industry in China. Despite the ongoing pandemic, people have found ways to celebrate and indulge in traditional festive foods. The success of time-honored brand restaurants and local specialties highlights the demand for traditional cuisine among consumers. The catering industry’s resurgence is an encouraging sign for businesses and the overall economy in China.
As the Lunar New Year holiday came to a close, many restaurants and food businesses in China reported strong sales and a resurgence in consumer confidence. Restaurants in Beijing, for instance, saw a surge in sales revenue compared with the same period in 2022. Cuihualou, a time-honored restaurant in the city, reported that its turnover during the weeklong Spring Festival holiday was about 30 percent higher than in 2022, with the restaurant almost reaching its seating capacity from the first day to the fifth day of Lunar New Year. The waiting time also rose to 80 minutes on average. To cope with the surge in customers, Cuihualou had to double the ingredients of its best-selling dishes, such as fried fish with secret sauce, Dongpo braised pork, and diced chicken in bean sauce.
Similarly, hotpot chain Donglaishun reported brisk sales during the holiday. Its 18 directly operated stores in Beijing achieved a total revenue of 7.75 million yuan ($1.15 million) in the seven days, up 135 percent year-on-year. Other stores in shopping malls and scenic spots across the city also broke sales records since 2022.
Food delivery platforms also saw robust growth in sales nationwide during the Spring Festival. Meituan Waimai, a major Chinese food delivery platform, reported that Beijing, Xi’an, Guangzhou, Chongqing, and Shanghai became the top five cities in food delivery sales during the holiday. Sales of takeaway dishes in Xi’an, for example, increased by 62.84 percent from the same period in 2022. Chongqing saw a year-on-year surge of 219.78 percent.
Even though the Spring Festival holiday has ended, many restaurant owners said they are ready to embrace consumption peaks on the day of the “Start of Spring” — the first of the 24 solar terms in the traditional Chinese calendar — which falls on Saturday, and Lantern Festival on Sunday. During Lantern Festival, people usually eat small glutinous rice balls known as yuanxiao or tangyuan, depending on different production methods.
Jinfang Snacks, a time-honored brand, reported an increasing number of consumers have started to buy its yuanxiao since the last two days of the Spring Festival holiday. This year, yuanxiao made by Jinfang Snacks can be purchased in more than 100 outlets of the supermarket Wumart in Beijing and also on Wumart’s Dmall digital platform.
The resurgence in consumer confidence is a welcome development for the catering industry, which suffered severely during the COVID-19 pandemic. With the government ending the requirement for mass testing and people not needing to show their health code when entering public places like shopping malls and restaurants, businesses have started to roar back to life. While the pandemic is still ongoing, the optimization of pandemic prevention and control measures in China has given the industry a much-needed boost, and businesses are hoping that the trend will continue in the coming months.