Food and beverage executives have a positive outlook heading into 2023

NEW YORK — Greater than two-thirds of meals and beverage trade executives surveyed by Marcum LLP have a constructive outlook for the yr forward.

The accounting and advisory providers agency requested executives at meals producers, eating places, distributors, retailers and agriculture producers about quite a lot of points integral to the well being of the trade. It discovered 69% of respondents have a constructive outlook on the trade over the following yr, in contrast with 20% who’ve a impartial outlook and 16% who’ve a damaging outlook. 

Practically 70% of respondents mentioned revenues had been up in 2022 in contrast with 2021, together with 48% who mentioned revenues had been up 10% or extra.

Revenues aren’t the one factor on the upswing, in keeping with the survey. Forty-five % of meals and beverage executives mentioned they grew their workforce by 5% or extra up to now 12 months, and 20% mentioned they grew their workforce by 10% or extra. Practically half of respondents mentioned they count on to develop their workforce in 2023. 

Roughly 70% of executives count on revenues to develop within the subsequent 12 months. Twenty-one % of respondents mentioned they count on to see revenues keep the identical in 2023 and 10% mentioned they count on to see revenues decline. 

“There’s a lot optimism concerning the way forward for meals and beverage firms,” mentioned Louis Biscotti, nationwide chief of Marcum’s meals and beverage group. “Truthfully, this was a bit stunning to me contemplating the numerous challenges going through the trade.” 

Practically 70% of meals and beverage executives cited inflation, rising commodities and different prices as a prime problem for 2022 and 2023. The annual inflation charge for the USA was 7.7% for the 12 months ended October 2022, in keeping with the US Division of Labor. As of October, the price of meals was up 11.2%, with grocery costs up 12.4% and restaurant costs up 8.6% year-over-year. 

When requested how their firms plan to deal with inflation within the yr forward, 62% of meals and beverage executives mentioned they plan to scale back prices and 57% mentioned they plan to boost costs. Thirty-five % mentioned they’re renegotiating with suppliers to deal with inflation. Roughly the identical quantity mentioned they’re altering their strategy to stock, avoiding the acquisition of extra merchandise or uncooked supplies. 

Labor additionally scored excessive on the listing of challenges. Whereas near half of respondents mentioned they grew their workforce in 2022, roughly the identical quantity mentioned securing expert expertise is a prime concern for 2023.

When requested what they’re doing to draw and retain expert labor, 58% of respondents mentioned they’re rising wages and 54% mentioned they’re bettering work-life balances. Thirty-eight % mentioned they’re providing bonuses, 35% mentioned they’re bettering advantages and 18% mentioned they’re providing onsite or paid coaching for workers.

Managing provide chain relationships is also prime of thoughts for meals and beverage executives. Forty % of respondents cited it as a prime problem for 2022 and 2023. They singled out a spread of ways in which provide chain points are impacting their companies, together with delivery delays (66%), value management (56%), manufacturing delays (49%), discovering new suppliers (47%) and uncooked materials sourcing (40%). Greater than 1 / 4 of respondents mentioned provide chain diversification, together with onshoring, is a prime enterprise technique for the yr forward.

Increasing and innovating services or products was prime on the listing of enterprise methods for 2023, with 72% of respondents inserting it amongst their prime three areas of focus. Reducing prices was among the many prime three methods for 45% of respondents, adopted by geographic enlargement (35%), elevating costs (31%), looking for M&A alternatives (37%), rising wages and advantages (26%), competing on worth (25%) and investing in expertise (20%). 

“With the height of the pandemic behind us, meals and beverage executives are eyeing the long run,” Mr. Biscotti mentioned. “It’s a watershed second for the trade with firms and buyer habits altering, sourcing changing into extra versatile, information changing into a driver of effectivity, M&A going sturdy and efforts to innovate and increase margins as competitors sharpens.”


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