In 2012, the Canadian fast food industry demonstrated only modest growth of 2% to reach a value of C$21.7 billion, while the number of outlets demonstrated a decline of 3%.
Due to the slower-than-expected pace of the economic recovery, Canadians operate with restricted budgets for dining out, and fast food products feature prominently in their consumption.
Due to its convenience and relatively low price, fast food continues to be an important staple in Canadian foodservice. However, the slow economic recovery did not automatically lead to higher demand for fast food.
Canadians became more watchful of health choices and, minding their budgets, increased consumption of only certain types of fast foods, such as ethnic cuisine, pizza and bakery products.
At the same time they slowly returned to the more conventional casual dining, such as cafés, bars and casual restaurants, proposing a wider variety of menus and featuring better ambiance.
According to a recent market report, 'Fast Food in Canada,' bakery and burgers remained the leading segments within the industry in terms of share, accounting for C$9 billion and C$7.1 billion respectively in 2012.
The Canadian fast food industry continues to be dominated by the established domestic chain Tim Hortons, which is ahead of global players such as McDonald's. This major Canadian chain continued to rank first in terms of sales, accounting for a 26% share at the end of 2012, far ahead of the 11% held by McDonald's.
Tim Hortons was also far ahead in transactions, accounting for 39%, and the number of outlets, with a 10% share. Subway captured third position with a 5% value share, was second in outlets and a distant third in the volume of transactions in 2012.
The Canadian fast food market is predicted to grow at a constant value compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 1% over the next five years to reach sales of C$23.0 billion by 2017.
The fast food environment promises to be tough, when businesses have to withstand difficult trends of an outflow of customers into casual-dining full-service restaurants as well as eating at home.
For more information on the Canadian fast food industry, see the latest research: Canadian Fast Food Industry
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