April 26, 2019

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Chick-Fil-A, Starbucks, Arbys among eateries hurt by federal shutdown

Chick-Fil-A, Starbucks, Arbys among eateries hurt by federal shutdown
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Dairy Queen, best known for its Blizzards, was the only fast food chain that bucked the trend, according to the Gravy Analytics report. The Berkshire Hathaway subsidiary saw D.C.-area traffic increase by 4 percent during the time period, but nationwide it dropped by 1 percent. External factors, like D.C.’s unseasonably warm weather during the shutdown, could explain those results.

But it seems like most D.C. restaurants have returned to business as usual after the shutdown ended.

Simons said that Founding Farmers’ revenue has returned to its usual level for this time of year. However, he still has been giving several families of federal workers free meals as they struggle to get back on their feet after missing weeks of paychecks and falling behind on bills.

Fast-casual chain &pizza gave away more than 30,000 pizzas to federal workers during the shutdown and hasn’t seen the same post-shutdown drag on sales.

“I would say that our business, although it’s not completely insulated, we have had an outpouring from the community given all of the effort that we put forward during the first shutdown,” CEO and co-founder Michael Lastoria said in an interview, adding that the price of the chain’s pizza is relatively affordable.

The pizza chain began preparing to restart the free pizza program last week, in case of a second shutdown, Lastoria said.

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