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Foodservice Market Recovery Predicted in 2021

14th December 2020

Maureen Gahan, Foodservice Specialist, Bord Bia – The Irish Food Board

Undoubtedly, 2020 will be a year that the foodservice industry (in Ireland and around the world) will be glad to see the back end of.

Foodservice Market Recovery 2021.PNG

Bord Bia’s 2020 Irish Foodservice Market Insights report published on 11th November estimates that the industry value will fall by as much as €4 billion (or 47%) this year. Back in January, the total consumer menu price was estimated at €8.5 billion, by the end of December it will have fallen to €4.5 billion.

But there is some light at the end of a very long tunnel, our reports predicts that the industry will bounceback in 2021, growing in value from anything between 16% and 41%. The report outlines a best, middle and worst case scenario, taking into account ongoing external factors at play.

In order to prepare for market improvements, we have outlined a number of considerations for both foodservice providers and food producers to best position their business for recovery and growth. 

For Food Producers, we call out the following recommendations:

  1. Reassess portfolio: operators and distributors are generally pairing back items carried, so now is a good time for suppliers to review product lines in terms of long-term profitability.
  2. Focus on critical targets: suppliers should invest in high priority customers for long-term success and look to support distributors as appropriate.
  3. Reset customer knowledge base: suppliers should take time to understand the new attitudes and behaviours of customers and understand how the disruption in 2020 has changed their outlook on issues such as sustainability, health and wellness etc.
  4. Prepare for a rejuvenated industry – suppliers should remember that a healthy bounceback will come in time and prepare accordingly. This includes assessing how foodservice will continue to blur with other channels such as retail and forecourt convenience.


Recordings from our end of year virtual seminar and online links to both the Insights report and our Irish Foodservice Directory are available at www.bordbia.ie/foodservice20

For more information, contact maureen.gahan@bordbia.ie