Following the release of a 10-point plan to optimise pandemic control by China CDC (Centre of Disease Control), local governments responded by lifting most restrictions on foodservice outlets, such as negative COVID-19 test result within 48 hours, and a capacity cap. Self-service cafeterias is expected to react well to the easing of restrictions, given that such players are more dependent on in-person dining and foot traffic.
Self-service cafeterias are likely to implement a pay-per-weight model going forward, to accommodate the increasing number of solo dining customers. For example, leading player Mr Rice is removing the item price and introducing a fixed price per weight at selected outlets, and offering half portions, allowing customers to enjoy a greater diversity of food options with a limited budget.
As self-service cafeterias is reaching saturation in tier-1 cities, players are pivoting their store expansion to lower-tier cities, given the growing consumer demand for cost-effective eateries. Moreover, self-service players can price their menus competitively against full-service restaurants in the area, offering lower prices for similar items, thanks to lower operating costs.
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Self-service cafeterias are outlets where there is no (or limited) service content. Rather than table service, there are food-serving counters/stalls where customers take the food they require as they walk along, placing it on a tray. In addition, there are often stations where customers order food and wait while it is prepared, particularly for items such as hamburgers or tacos which must be served hot and can be prepared quickly. For some food and drink items, customers collect an empty container, pay at the check-out, and fill the container after check-out. Free second servings are often allowed under this system. For legal purposes (and the consumption patterns of customers), this system is rarely or never used for alcoholic beverages. Self-service cafeterias do not have a cover charge, customers are either charged a flat rate for admission (as in a buffet) or pay at the check-out for each item. Some cafeterias also charge by weight. Self-service cafeterias resemble contract catering self-service cafeterias such as canteens, dining halls and cafeterias located within institutions such as a large office building, school and universities. However, fully captive contract self-service cafeterias are excluded from consumer foodservice. Unlike fast food, self-service cafeterias feature a menu comprising full, regular meals, often with a large choice of first course, main course and desserts. As cafeterias can effectively serve large number of customers with comparatively few employees, they are often found within larger complexes, for example, department stores, shopping malls, travel foodservice (motorways stations, railway stations, airports). Self-service cafeteria examples include: Ciao (Autogrill), Flunch (Agapes Restauration SA), IKEA (Inter Ikea Systems BV)See All of Our Definitions
This report originates from Passport, our Self-Service Cafeterias research and analysis database.
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