The head of the Wisconsin Restaurant Association says higher food costs aren't only at the supermarket. From wheat to meat to dairy, the cost of many foods are up, and Association President Ed Lump says there's no mistaking the impact of those rising costs on restaurants around the state. "Flour costs . . . are a hundred percent, or more, higher than they were a year ago," notes Lump. "If you're using a lot of flower for pizza or baking, you feel that. Cheese is another one.
And, while it's costing diners more to drive to their favorite place, that cost is also impacting the industry: Lump notes that some restaurant suppliers are now adding fuel surcharges on to the cost of deliveries. Lump's advice on how restaurants can weather the economic slowdown? Make adjustments now, rather than waiting for conditions to improve. He expects some restaurants to close because of increased costs, but predicts most will be able to make the needed changes to stay competitive — and stay in business.