Food sales have overtaken drinks sales for the pub and restaurants group Mitchells & Butlers. The group reported a fall in half-year profits and said that they will moderately increase their food prices. However, they have stated that they are also raising the quality of the food on their menus. With this they hope to ease the effects of the rising costs to run the restaurants which include hiring staff, restaurant insurance, supplies, rent, energy and other general costs.
Mitchell & Butlers pre-tax profit for the 28 weeks to 9 April was £43 million, which is down 40% on the £73 million that was recorded a year earlier.
The groups interim Chief Executive, Jeremy Blood explained that “The better food we put out there, the more happy people will be in spending more in our restaurants. It’s not inflation that’s driving food sales, it’s better products”.
Blood wants to improve the menus in all the chains that the company owns which include All Bar One, Toby’s Carvery, Nicholson’s and Harvester.
The company has already spent £53 million in the six months to April on opening 29 new venues and converting 31 premises to be more customer friendly to serve food.
Even though Mitchells & Butlers has sold three hundred and thirty three drinks-led pubs to Stonegate Pub Company for £373 million in November last year as part of this massive restructuring strategy, the company still owns almost 1,600 restaurant and pubs.
Blood notes that the restaurant chain that has been doing particular well is Harvester. This isn’t surprising for us at Quotesearcher as we love that they have an ‘early bird’ menu that is available all day between 12-10pm and that the salad bar is included in the price! We hope that they won’t increase the prices too much, as at the moment we think that Harvester is a great place to take the family out without having to break the bank.
Would you be happy to spend more money on food in Mitchells & Butlers restaurants? Let us know your opinion.