When skyrocketing gasoline prices first began to put the squeeze on consumer discretionary spending, logic told you, and a survey by Chicago-based foodservice prognosticator firm Technomic, Inc. confirmed, that restaurant meals would be the first thing cut from many household's budgets. A quickie overnight survey conducted by Technomic in late August (pre-Katrina and pre-Rita) found 18 percent of consumers saying they had already slashed their spending at quick-service restaurants because ...

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