Lafayette restaurants saw a sharp drop in sales in April, according to data from the Lafayette Economic Development Authority, which could be a sign that customers are tightening their budgets due to rising inflation.
Restaurants in the city of Lafayette had sales of $40.5 million in April 2022, about $1.6 million less than in March. Adjusted for inflation in 2021 dollars, restaurants brought in about $37.6 million, down about 8.5% from $41.1 million in April 2021.
Sales are adjusted using the US Bureau of Labor Statistics inflation rate of 7.03% for the period April 2021 to April 2022.
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The drop in restaurant revenue came as the entire parish recorded $699.9 million in taxable retail sales, which is a record for the month of April, according to LEDA. Adjusted to 2021 dollars, the month saw sales of $650.7 million, which would represent a decline of about 1.4% from the April 2021 total.
Over the year, the parish recorded $2.6 billion in sales through April. In 2021 dollars, total Parish sales are approximately $2.4 billion and up slightly from the 2021 year-to-date.
Mandi Mitchell, president and CEO of LEDA, said consumer spending has remained strong in Lafayette Parish despite rising costs for basic goods and services. However, she expects spending to start to slow.
“Relief at the cash register may be delayed for some time due to domestic supply chain issues and geopolitical disputes,” Mitchell said. grocery shopping, delaying major purchases, or limiting recreational spending.
“It is imperative, now more than ever, that we keep dollars spent locally by supporting local retailers, restaurants and service providers.”
Restaurants tend to be among the businesses that suffer the most when consumer spending begins to decline, with families choosing to eat at home rather than spending money dining out.
On the year, restaurants are still slightly ahead of 2021 sales, recording $156.1 million – or $145.1 million in 2021 dollars – compared to $143.7 million through April 2021 .
Grocery stores, meanwhile, saw their sales increase in April. Grocery stores in the city of Lafayette had sales of $28.5 million in April, or about $26.5 million in 2021 dollars. Adjusting for inflation, grocery sales increased by 2.6% from April 2021. On the year, grocery sales increased 3.4% when adjusted to 2021 dollars.
Bars also saw sales rise in April to $3.2 million. Adjusted for inflation, the bars brought in just over $3 million during the month, about 14.9% more than in April 2021.
In 2022, bars and nightclubs have so far recorded $11.4 million, or about $10.6 million in 2021 dollars. Year-over-year bar sales are up about 12 .2%.
Almost all municipalities in the parish of Lafayette have seen their sales increase from 2021. The city of Lafayette has recorded sales of $1.8 billion so far this year, or about $1.6 billion in 2021 dollars. The adjusted total is up about 0.4% from 2021.
Broussard had approximately $246.5 million in sales this year, or approximately $229.2 million in 2021 dollars. Adjusted for inflation, sales are up 14.7% from the same period in 2021. For Duson, sales total $15.9 million in 2022, or approximately $14.8 million in 2021 dollars. Sales are up 3.9% after adjusting for inflation.
Youngsville had $146.6 million in sales through April, or about $136.3 million in 2021 dollars. Adjusted for inflation, sales were up 7.7% from 2021 Parish’s unincorporated parts had sales of $222.4 million this year, or $206.8 million in 2021 dollars. Adjusted sales are up 1.2% from 2021.
Only Scott and Carencro saw their sales decline when adjusted for inflation. Scott had $105.8 million in sales this year, which is actually an increase from last year, but the total is about 98.4% in 2021 dollars. Adjusted sales are in slight decrease – 0.05% – compared to 2021.
Carencro’s sales are $118.3 million through April, which would represent approximately $110 million in 2021 dollars. Adjusted sales are down 22.3% from 2021.