People are already switching to cheap pies and samsa
Shawarma had barely become the most common street food in Moscow when its sellers began announcing a sharp rise in price. Most often this is explained by rising costs, but some businessmen openly say that they are focusing on well-known chain establishments.
The price of a serving of shawarma in Moscow may soon reach 500 rubles – such estimates have been heard from the owners of points selling this dish in recent months. True, with a caveat: buyers are not psychologically ready for such a price. This is how a Muscovite woman who recently closed her shawarma business described the situation. “For the last six months I have been donating my personal money to keep the business afloat,” a woman said in one of the district communities on social networks.
She noted that this business becomes unprofitable with a small amount of traffic, that is, attendance. The fact that the payback of shawarma outlets directly depends on the location was confirmed to MK by three owners of such establishments. “It only makes sense to work near the metro, where there is a constant flow of people,” categorically states Anvar, the owner of one of these eateries in the vicinity of the Shchukinskaya metro station.
Anwar did not answer whether there will be a big price increase in the near future, however, over the past six months the price of a portion has increased by approximately 15%. “It’s all a matter of habit,” says the owner of the outlet. “Two years ago, shawarma should have cost no more than 200 rubles, now it’s no more than 300 if it’s chicken, and up to 400 if it’s with meat.” However, according to MK’s interlocutor, the client will not understand the price of 500 rubles.
“We have a normal price,” smiles Rakhmatullo, a shawarma maker who works near the Novokuznetskaya metro station. – It will be more expensive in other places, and it will rise in price here.
As an analyst of the restaurant segment of one of the large Moscow shopping and entertainment centers explained to MK, the tariffs of chain and individual catering establishments are indeed related, although this is not direct price collusion. “As a rule, large fast food chains have the greatest freedom in pricing policy,” the expert noted. “For many years they performed a stabilizing function, setting the price level on the market, but now, on the contrary, they can become drivers of check growth. The point, as a rule, is not the cost of food, although that too, it’s the average check for lunch in establishments of the same category.”
Over the past two or three years, a key change has occurred with shawarma: in Moscow it has emerged from the “marginal” ghetto, becoming one of the completely respectable options for a budget-friendly and tasty snack or even lunch, added MK’s interlocutor. In particular, in the hierarchy of prestige (but not convenience or recognition), shawarma already ranks above the largest “burger-and-potatoes” fast food chains. “Unlike mass-market burgers, shawarma is made in front of the buyer, this gives the impression of greater quality,” the analyst added.
In recent months, fast food giants have publicly announced price increases (and raised them) at least twice – as a result, the average lunch bill at these establishments has already exceeded 500 rubles. Therefore, in the coming months, as customers adapt to this price level, the cost of shawarma may also rise, if we talk about points in food courts.
“But budget food at the metro will not disappear completely,” says a shopping center analyst. — You can already notice that the assortment at shawarma preparation points has expanded to include ready-made products. They are of much lower quality than shawarma, but do not require cooking and most often cost less than a hundred rubles.
As Rakhmatullo told MK, the most popular in recent months have been pies with sausages (including large ones that look like braided ones), fried pies with potatoes, and samsa of all kinds. During the daytime, even more of this product is sold than shawarma. This means that if they suddenly stop buying shawarma for the nominal 500 rubles, there remains a chance to retrain as a “pie shop”.
And there is a hole in Shavukha