Millennials are killing the nation’s most notorious chain restaurants, and yes, we will gracefully accept your thanks for it.
Sure, according to most hastily-assembled thinkpieces and blurbs written right before deadline, Millennials are responsible for all that ails you. Whether it be global warming, sags in the economy, a degradation of social values, or the end of “please” and “thank you.” Whatever bothers you, a writer somewhere will say its all the fault of the dreaded Millennial.
But while we’re busy not getting married and eating too much avocado toast (oh, and being crippled by student loan debt and struggling to be employed in an economy full of boomers who refuse to retire), we are also putting an end to one of the more shameful trends in recent decades: hoards of chain restaurants.
According to market trends in recent years, some of the nations largest chain restaurants are feeling the squeeze, thanks almost entirely to the dwindling interest of the largest and youngest age group.
CEOs heading these massive buffalo wing and cheese dip spots are panicking to see that young Americans don’t flock toward their traditional fare, and profits are tanking as a result.
Whether it be Buffalo Wild Wings or Applebees, young diners just aren’t eager to visit the corporation with 100 stores in just as many miles. Instead, young Americans prefer to frequent local establishments, as well as associating with large brands who show an eco-minded approach or just serve high quality food.
Unlike their parents, Millennials are also more interested in cooking at home, a response to a dip in the economy around the time many were coming to adulthood. Meal delivery services like Blue Apron and Green Chef do their best to fill this space.
When Millennials do eat out, they are more likely to visit quick service restaurants like Chipotle and even McDonalds.
Savvy on the internet, Millennials also enjoy ordering food online, cutting out human interaction and maximizing convenience. Unfortunately, the category of TGI Chilibees simply cannot keep up with these demands.
That doesn’t mean they won’t try. In fact, a great number of chains have begun offering delivery in an effort to entice Millennial diners. Panera Bread, a once very popular chain, has just entered this delivery market, though time will tell if they see valuable returns from the considerable investment.
But let’s be honest here – what do we really lose when we lose these mediocre chains anyway? Often, nothing more than pre-made food that has been categorized as “microwaved” with sky high caloric values and astronomical sodium content.
In an increasingly local-focused economy which looks at environmental factors and the value of family businesses, it only makes sense for consumers to shift away from multi-billion-dollar conglomerates serving sub-par food.
So yes, older generations; you may lose your overcooked fajitas or your all-you-can-eat cheesy biscuits, but what you will gain is so, so much more (and so much more tasty). You’re welcome.