Colorado led the country in restaurant industry job growth with a 6.3 percent year-to-date increase as of September 2014, according to the National Restaurant Association’s chief economist, Bruce Grindy.
According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, 45 of the 47 states the organization reports from experienced growth in the restaurant industry. Restaurant job growth outpaced the country’s economy through the first nine months of the year with several states, including Oklahoma, Alabama, and Colorado, adding industry jobs at rates much higher than their overall economies through September. The country’s year-to-date employment gain was 1.8 percent whereas the national rate of restaurant industry employment was 3 percent. This includes jobs at bars and restaurants, cafes, food trucks and more. Last year was the 14th year in a row that restaurant industry job growth has passed the broader economy and this year is on track to become the 15th consecutive year.
Job growth in the restaurant industry surpasses the overall economy in most states. Colorado’s 6.3 percent gain was the greatest the state has seen on a year-to-date basis since 1995. Oklahoma was second with 5.6 percent increase and Georgia took third with a 5 percent increase. Texas added 39,900 restaurant jobs as of September. These numbers should give hope to those attending culinary arts programs and hoping to find jobs after graduation. Vermont and Wyoming were the only states that had declines in restaurant employment so far this year.
As of 2014, one in 10 working Americans, 13.5 million people, work in the restaurant industry. In a table published in the December 2013 Monthly Labor Review, the BLS projects the growth of the industry to reach 9.3 percent by 2022.