RESEARCH: Third of customers would shun chains hit by foodborne illness outbreak

Food hygiene ratings

New research into the restaurant industry has demonstrated just how detrimental a hygiene breach could be to a foodservice chain’s business.  

Some 31% of diners said they would avoid eating at other locations of a chain restaurant if just one location was involved in a foodborne illness outbreak, according to the poll by food safety specialist Steritech.

The company carried out the survey for its ‘Diners Dish e-book’, which addresses consumer preference and behaviour in several key revenue-driving areas, including delivery, online reviews and social media, public health and cleanliness, and foodborne illness.

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 41% of those surveyed said a restaurants’ hygiene score is a factor in their decision on where to dine, while sticky or dirty tables and chairs was the top “pet peeve” of diners.

Almost a third of consumers said that a foodborne illness outbreak at a single branch of a chain would put them off returning to any of its stores, while 75% of consumers said they “sometimes or often” use restaurant review sites to help select where they will dine.

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Andrew Seymour

The author Andrew Seymour

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