Join the Cleveland Scene Press Club. Because No News is Bad News.

Wednesday, June 24, 2020

80% of Ohio Restaurants Do Not Anticipate Breaking Even in 2020, According to New Poll

Posted By on Wed, Jun 24, 2020 at 3:43 PM

click to enlarge ALI HOVEN
  • Ali Hoven

The Ohio Restaurant Association has been conducting weekly polls to evaluate the health of the state's restaurants and the ongoing impact of COVID-19.

Gov. Mike DeWine gave restaurants the go-ahead to open outdoor dining on May 15 and indoor seating on May 21. Since then, ORA says eight out of 10 have returned to serving guests, but that most owners report they are operating at less than 50% of sales, compared to the previous year.

And 79% of restaurant owners said they don't expect to break even in 2020.

“Sales at Ohio restaurants are improving incrementally each week, which is good news, but customer traffic remains low for most sectors of our industry,” said John Barker, president and CEO of the ORA, in a release.

He noted that pizza places and fast-casual operations seem to be doing the best — especially with carry-out and delivery — but that dine-in destinations are having a difficult time.

"Restaurants that rely primarily on dine in are struggling to rebuild sales due to capacity restrictions and some reticence among consumers due to COVID-19 concerns," he said.

Their survey from May 31-June 9 also showed:

  • 80% of Ohio restaurants are currently open — up 10% from the week prior — and 9% more plan to reopen soon
  • 65% of restaurants are operating at year-over-year loss of 20% to more than 70%
  • 47% of restaurants are selling to-go cocktails, meal kits or take-and-bake dishes to help offset their losses
  • And most restaurants will continue to offer carry-out and delivery, even though their dining rooms are open

Tags: , , ,

We welcome readers to submit letters regarding articles and content in Cleveland Scene. Letters should be a minimum of 150 words, refer to content that has appeared on Cleveland Scene, and must include the writer's full name, address, and phone number for verification purposes. No attachments will be considered. Writers of letters selected for publication will be notified via email. Letters may be edited and shortened for space.

Email us at

Cleveland Scene works for you, and your support is essential.

Our small but mighty local team works tirelessly to bring you high-quality, uncensored news and cultural coverage of Cleveland and beyond.

Unlike many newspapers, ours is free – and we'd like to keep it that way, because we believe, now more than ever, everyone deserves access to accurate, independent coverage of their community.

Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing pledge, your support helps keep Cleveland's true free press free.

Read the Digital Print Issue

December 2, 2020

View more issues


Never miss a beat

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.


© 2020 Cleveland Scene: 737 Bolivar Rd., Suite 4100, Cleveland, OH 44115, (216) 505-8199
Logos and trademarks on this site are property of their respective owners.

Website powered by Foundation