The restaurant industry in Texas has lost nearly 700,000 jobs due to COVID-19


AUSTIN, TX, April 20, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — In Texas, the National Restaurant Association estimates that more than 688,000 restaurant workers have been laid off or furloughed since the start of the coronavirus outbreak. This represents at least 61% of the 1.2 million employees who worked at Texas’ restaurants and bars in February.

A recent survey by the National Restaurant Association (NRA) interviewed more than 6,500 restaurant owners as part of an ongoing assessment of the impact the COVID-19 pandemic has had on their business since 1st of March2020.

Nationally, the restaurant industry estimates that more than eight million jobs have been lost – this loss represents two out of three restaurant jobs. In addition, the restaurant and foodservice industry has lost $30 billion of turnover in March and is about to lose additional turnover $50 billion by the end of this month.

In Texas, as the coronavirus pandemic continues to relentlessly hit the industry, 84% of restaurateurs say they have laid off or furloughed employees. Restaurant owners plan to lay off or furlough 18% more employees over the next 30 days.

Texas restaurant owners and employees are in dire straits. We envision the potential extinction of the Texas restoration ecology. What else needs to happen to demonstrate to the government that a mandatory closure, a PPP program that has reached less than 7% of restaurants and nearly 700,000 unemployed Texas restaurant workers will cause the permanent closure of many Texas restaurants?” said Dr. Emilie Williams Knight, president and CEO of the Texas Restaurant Association. “When all of this started we thought the worst case scenario would be up to 500,000 jobs lost – and as we sit here today not knowing when dining halls will be allowed to reopen, that means the end result will be much, much worse.”

Restaurant owners reported an average decline in sales over the period from April 1 to April 10 of 70% and 96% of Texas restaurant owners say their dollar sales volume during the period of April 1 to April 10 was lower than it was during the same period in 2019.

Unfortunately, based on these dizzying slowdowns, 6% of the more than 50,000 restaurants Texas anticipate that they will permanently close within the next 30 days, according to this research.

Besides, Texas restaurateurs have taken or plan to take further action over the next 30 days:

  • 34% of Texas operators say they have temporarily closed their restaurant since the coronavirus outbreak began in March. 38% plan to temporarily close their restaurant in the next 30 days.
  • 70% of Texas operators say they have continued to operate but only offsite. 63% of carriers plan to continue operating for offsite traffic only for the next 30 days.

It is clear that the restaurant industry in Texas is one of the hardest hit industries in the Texas. In preparation for the goal of reopening the 1st May, we created the Texas Restaurant Promise and Governor Abbott’s Needs List. We need to safely restart the restaurant industry in Texas and working with our elected officials to get the relief we desperately need. Learn more about this initiative at

For the latest information from the Texas Restaurant Association, visit the TRA Coronavirus Resource Page. To help provide financial support to Texas’ restaurants and their employees, make a donation to the TX Restaurant Relief Fund created by the Texas Restaurant Association Education Foundation. To see infographic here.

About the Texas Restaurant Association

The Texas Restaurant Association was formed in 1937 to serve as an advocate for Texas and the indispensable resource for the restaurant industry. Today, as a leading professional association, the TRA represents the state $66 billion the restaurant industry, which includes more than 48,000 establishments and a workforce of 1.3 million employees. Along with the Texas Restaurant Association Education Foundation, the association represents, educates and promotes the growing industry.

SOURCE Texas Restaurant Association

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