Foodservice Equipment Reports


The general economy is weak, consumers are tentative and foodservice operators continue to worry about their prospects, but there is no question operators are buying more equipment and supplies, said Foodservice Equipment Reports Publisher Robin Ashton at the magazine’s annual E&S Market Forecast President’s Preview meeting held in Evanston, Ill., on July 27.

“The hard numbers don’t lie,” Ashton said, explaining why he and forecasting partner John Muldowney, v.p.-marketing at Alto-Shaam, revised their estimates and forecasts for E&S market growth upward for every year from 2010 through ’14.

“The market recovered faster and more strongly than we anticipated,” Ashton said. “The public E&S companies saw sales turn positive the second quarter ’10, the MAFSI Barometer ticked up 5% in the fourth quarter ’10 and we now know both the Top 100 Manufacturers and FER’s Top Dealers also grew last year. On the E&S side, this looks like a quite normal, v-shaped recovery,” Ashton said.

The recovery has clearly continued into the current year, Ashton noted. Both the seven public E&S companies and the MAFSI Barometer were positive in the first quarter. Results from those public companies reporting second quarter revenues and a preliminary look at the second quarter MAFSI Barometer provided exclusively to FER for the meeting show continued strong growth in the second quarter.

FER now forecasts E&S market growth at the manufacturer level will post current dollar growth of 4% and real growth of 2.2% this year. Next year, the magazine forecasts the market will grow 4.7% in nominal terms and see real growth of 2.6%.

The complete FER 2012 E&S Market Forecast is available for purchase for $1,295. It includes seven PowerPoint decks covering general economic, operator and materials price trends, historical E&S pricing data from AutoQuotes Inc., rankings and analysis of the Top 100 E&S Manufacturers, FER Top Dealers and the E&S forecast itself. For information, e-mail Robin Ashton at rashton(at)

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