NSW eateries increase turnover
CAFÉS and restaurants in NSW are enjoying stronger increases in turnover than anywhere else in the country.
New data from the Australian Bureau of Statistics shows an increase in national turnover of 9%, to $23.8 billion, in the year to March.
While NSW forged ahead of the pack, retail trades continued to go backwards in the ACT, South Australia and the Northern Territory.
"NSW continues to be the star performer, with industry turnover increasing to $7.8 billion, a growth rate of 14.7%," Restaurant and Catering Australia chief executive John Hart said.
"Victoria and Queensland also recorded positive increases of 12.2% and 10.3% respectively."
Cocoa Cafe in Coffs Harbour has profited in two ways in recent months - both from an increase in tourists passing through the region and major renovations to its Coffs Central complex.
Owners Melissa and Aaron Dyett are confident enough about their future to be installing a new outdoor glass shelter to fit in 60 more people at the café.
"It's hard to say it's due to a trend or the renovations," Mrs Dyett said.
"A lot more out-of-towners seem to be visiting through the peak and slower times - a lot of them stop in on their way to Byron.
"But we've definitely seen an increase to our turnover."
The overall spend might be increasing, but Restaurant and Catering Australia said many restaurants and cafes were still in crisis.
Mr Hart said the industry operated on the whims of the economy, with people spending less while their chips were down.
"An increase in industry turnover does not mean an improvement in the business bottom line," Mr Hart said.
"In fact, we know spend per person continues to decline, adding to growing cost pressures."