Fast food in the UK is dominated by large international brands, with this situation expected to continue over the forecast period. The convenience provided by an underlying understanding of both menus and pricing by a large proportion of UK consumers plays a notable role in protecting international brands from independent competition.
While a concern, the area has come under significantly less pressure than full-service restaurant operators with regard to increasing staffing costs. Roles within fast-food outlets are generally less skilled, with technology facilitating increased mechanisation in many areas.
Business models in this area are highly differentiated compared to full-service restaurants, with there being a greater proportion of franchising. While performance of brand owners remains robust, we have observed franchisee owners entering administration, with Burger King suffering particularly badly.
Large corporations in this area continue to be subject to intense speculation surrounding the long-term sustainability of business models. McDonald’s is a particular focus of attention.
Health remains the most significant topic of discussion in this area, with brands adapting menus accordingly. A large number of brands with a major focus on health have performed strongly in recent years, including Leon and Itsu.
Previously, delivery options for many fast food consumers were highly limited. However, the growth of third-party delivery partners has facilitated convenience for consumers and revenue growth opportunities for fast food chains.
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This industry report originates from Passport, our Consumer Foodservice market research database.