Restaurant count still growing in Ohio and U.S.

The National Restaurant Association says official data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics, which is based on an actual count of filings of businesses with employees, shows restaurant unit growth is strong on the national level, and Ohio is showing growth as well. The government data is through the second quarter of 2017.

Here are the facts: The number of restaurants in Ohio at mid-year 2017 was 22,518, compared to 22,048 at the beginning of 2016. Across the United States, the number of restaurants at mid-year 2017 was 628,671, compared to 606,304 at the beginning of 2016.

The government data contradicts a report in Nation’s Restaurant News indicating the number of U.S. restaurants fell 2 percent, to 647,288 units, from the previous year, according to the NPD Group’s 2017 fall census. The report said unit count for independent restaurants dropped 3 percent, while the unit count for chains remained flat, according to the fall 2017 ReCount census of commercial restaurant locations by NPD.