Maybe it was a celebration of the rains that finally arrived in June and reversed the prevailing weather pattern.
July, it turns out, was something of a breakout month for this province’s food and beverage sector. After a sour start to the summer in June, sales in hospitality outlets such as bars or restaurants took a big leap forward in July. Owners of these enterprises saw revenues grow by 2.3 percent over June’s performance.
That turned out to be the biggest one month advance in the entire country and it was even close. The whole country posted a negative figure and the next best provincial showing was 70-percent lower.
Now, this sounds quite upbeat but the breakdown does not necessarily mean we bought more restaurant meals or had an extra pint or two because a big part of the higher figures resulted from price increases, not bigger volumes. Nonetheless, it is a sign that consumers were still quite willing to engage in this kind of discretionary spending, even if prices are going up.