Italian and Latin/South American cuisines have both lost share of the UK restaurant market over the past year, according to the latest MCA data.

The UK Restaurant Market Report shows Japanese concepts have gained the most ground, followed by American and Asian.

The gourmet burger segment, despite high-profile casualties, has retained a steady share of the market, as has British food.

Italian is set to fall from a 39.2% share of outlets in 2017 to 37.1% by the end of this year, although it remains by far the most dominant cuisine, with American the second largest, at 21.2%. Over the past year, Prezzo, Carluccio’s and Jamie’s Italian have all announced site closures, with c140 sites affected by their respective Company Voluntary Arrangements (CVAs).

Meanwhile, Latin & South American chains have dropped from a 6% share of market to 5.2%. It follows a year in which Prezzo effectively axed its Chimichanga brand, with just two sites remaining open out of 33.

The report indicates that Japanese cuisine has seen a spike in its share of the market – from 6.8% to 7.7% year-on-year, with Asian food up from 5.4% to 6.2%. The report puts the gains down to more contemporary spins on classic menu items, as well as greater appreciation of the flavours and ingredients prevalent in these segments and respect for the skills required to create many of the dishes.

The report, which was unveiled at last week’s Restaurant Conference, analyses outlet share across eight cuisine types, including mapping the progress across a five-year period. It values the total restaurant market at £19.4bn, from 31,584 outlets in 2018.

The full report examines the breadth of the restaurant industry, market developments, major issues, levers for growth and the future outlook.

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