Lawrence, KS, September 5, 2023 – The Lawrence Restaurant Association (LRA) is
urging the community to support its local restaurants. This summer, we saw several local
establishments close, and many more reduce hours or services.

For the sake of this vibrant community we all love, it is imperative that we support our local
economy. Here is some data to highlight what restaurants and small businesses, on the whole,
are facing:

Only 16% of restaurants nationally expect to turn a profit in 2023, with over half expecting to
bring in less revenue than they did in 2022. According to recent data, more than two-thirds of
independent restaurants have experienced sales declines over the past 12 months.

Prices of raw ingredients & supplies increased by approximately 10% in 2022 and are predicted to
increase by nearly the same amount in 2023. Additionally, hospitality industry wages increased
by more than 9% year-over-year as of June 2022 and are on pace to increase by another 10%
year-over-year as of this month. On top of the substantially higher costs for materials and labor,
commercial rent has increased by approximately 8% year-over-year nationwide.

The math is simple: the cost of doing business has gone up substantially, and revenues continue
to go down. Bear in mind that restaurant profit margins average just 3-5%, so this is particularly
difficult for small, independent restaurants to absorb.

Inflation has hit us all hard. Everything costs more – from groceries to utilities to dining out. Just
like you, restaurant owners have been forced to make tough decisions about how to spend what
little comes in the door, often finding that they must also increase prices in order to stay in

If you are not in a position to support a local business as much as you might like, there are ways
you can help:

> Eat & shop local whenever you can.
> Recommend local establishments to those asking for ideas on where to eat & shop.
> Like, comment & share local business social media content.
> Post your own social media content about local spots you love.
> Give gift cards - even a $10 gift certificate helps!
> Leave positive reviews.

These issues aren't going away any time soon. But concerted community support could go a
long way to keeping our beloved local businesses open.

Eat local. Shop local. Support local.



Cocktail Trail
October 19th-22nd

Lawrence Restaurant Week
January 18th-28th


The Lawrence Restaurant Association (LRA) is an assembly of commercial restaurant owners,
executive chefs and food industry professionals who work together to develop and promote
Lawrence as a dining & drinking destination through collaboration, communication, and
community resources.