Canadian restaurant and bar sales up nearly 21 percent after lifting of COVID-19 restrictions

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      Sales in food services and drinking places in Canada rose 20.7 percent in February 2022 compared to January.

      The monthly increase reported by Statistics Canada followed the lifting of COVID-19 restrictions by provinces across the country.

      On a seasonally adjusted basis, sales in food services and drinking places on the national level totalled $6.4 billion in February.

      [Seasonally adjusted data is information that has been modified to eliminate seasonal and calendar influences.]

      In a report Tuesday (April 26), Statistics Canada stated that all provinces saw increases in sales.

      Sales rose at full-service restaurants in February by 47.5 percent.

      Limited-service restaurants, like fastfood establishments, saw an increase of three percent.

      Special food services, like food trucks and catering, registered an increase of 18 percent.

      Meanwhile, sales in drinking places rose on a monthly basis in February 2022 by 38.7 percent.

      In B.C., the provincial government lifted restrictions on personal gatherings, organized gatherings and events, nightclubs, bars and restaurants, exercise and fitness, and adult sports tournaments effective February 16, 2022.

      On March 11, B.C.’s indoor mask order ceased as well as restrictions on long-term care visitors, faith gatherings and overnight camps for children and youth.

      The province’s COVID-19 vaccine card mandate ended on April 8.