How much South Africans spend on takeaways

A generation ago, eating out regularly was practically unheard of, but gone are the days of mom or dad decided to “splashing out”on a box of fish and chips.

Speaking at a recent Nedbank franchising roadshow, Linda Reid, chief commercial officer at Lightstone Explore noted that gone are the days of junk food being a “special treat”. Instead in many households, fast food has now become more of a staple than a spoil.

“South Africans spend close to R2 billion a month on fast food, which represents more than 10% of total discretionary spend,” said Reid

“Some households buy take-aways up to three times a week, while others might treat themselves once a month. It all depends on income level and proximity to a fast food outlet.”

Some of the interesting statistics found by the study include:

  • There are around 50 fast-food chain brands in South Africa, operating out of 5,800 brand outlets.
  • 90% of South African residents live within 5 km of at least one fast food outlet, and almost half of them have a fast food restaurant within 1 km of their homes.
  • There is obviously a lot of variation, but households in the highest income brackets are likely to spend between R1,400 and R1,500 per month on takeaways. A typical family within those brackets will visit roughly twice a week and spend just over R200 each time.
  • On the lower end of the income scale, families will usually visit less than once a month.  Over the course of a year and their monthly spend will be around R10-R70 per month.
  • Households in the Johannesburg, Cape Town, Tshwane, Ekurhuleni and eThekwini metros are the biggest spenders.
  • The top 15 brands account for 80% of the stores.

“Unfortunately, these data aren’t conveniently spread out in homogenous little pockets across the country,” said Reid.

“As we all know, South Africa is one of the most unequal countries in the world when it comes to income distribution. This means that in some areas there are a lot of people with a little to spend, while in other areas there are fewer people with a lot to spend.”


Read: The biggest fast food franchises in South Africa in 2017

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