Over the past 40 years, revenue of China’s catering industry has climbed from 5.48 billion yuan ($854 million) to 4 trillion yuan, over 700 times, since the start of the country’s reform and opening-up policy, China News reported.
The data was released by the China Cuisine Association at a conference held in Beijing on May 29.
Data by the association indicates that industry revenue reached 3.96 trillion yuan in 2017, accounting for 10.8 percent of the country’s total retail sales of consumer goods and contributing 11.3 percent to the overall consumer market growth.
In 1978, there were less than 120,000 catering enterprises across the country. However, by 2017 that figure had surged to 4.65 million. The number of catering employees in China also saw a dramatic rise from 1.04 million to 30 million during the same period, says the association.
Today, the scale of China’s catering industry ranks second in the world following the U.S., which has a yearly revenue of about 5.2 trillion yuan.