People just aren't taking what used to be called power lunches, and working lunches take place around desks or in conference rooms now. Spending on lunch was off by $3 billion last year and that's forcing some restaurants out of business.
Greater Houston Restaurant Association President Jonathan Horowitz says the impact is being felt locally.
“Public dining habits have changed over the last year or two,” Horowitz says.
“Because the overhead is so high and the margins are getting smaller and smaller, and with traffic declining, it becomes more and more difficult to operate,” he adds. “We are seeing that locally.”
Casual sit-down restaurants -- like Jerry Built Homegrown Burgers -- are being hit the hardest. That company closed its last two Houston locations last weekend.