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Viral fights in fast food restaurants. The rise of the lone diner. The way no brand is able to escape a hostile political landscape.

2020 is not going to be a quiet one for the restaurant industry.

In our recent report on Consumer Trends for 2020, Brandwatch surveyed 8,000 people around the world and studied social posts around key topics and industries to see what shifts we could see heading into a new year.

Here, we’ll lay out six trends we’ve identified for the restaurant industry as we head into 2020.

Note: If you want to get more detail on the data to look at more wide-scale trends, make sure to check out the report itself.

1. Politics is unavoidable

Regardless of whether a restaurant is a fast food outlet or part of a sit-down restaurant chain, links to politics and politicians can cause outrage online.

When examining social media conversation around some of the biggest brands across the restaurant industry, politics surfaced as a significant part of the conversation. If brand executives support particular politicians or stances, the brand could be called out in a big way on social media.

For example, the following tweet caused so much of a stir it appeared in our report 101 times brands went viral in 2019.

Social Media