Cafe culture booms in Macarthur despite ongoing pandemic

Picture: Shutterstock
Picture: Shutterstock

People might be working from home more but that hasn't stopped Macarthur locals from pursuing the perfect cup of coffee.

Data released by illion and AlphaBeta, part of Accenture, last month has demonstrated the important role coffee is playing in helping weary workers to cope with the daily grind.

Alphabeta director Dr Andrew Charlton said most suburbs have seen an increase in cafe spend consistent with a large part of the population working from home, particularly through to July.

"This data shows that if working from home continues over the next year, we will entrench a new vibrancy in the economic activity of our suburbs," he said.

"And if the trend continues, we will see other local business impacts strengthen in suburbs, including more small businesses and smaller retail precincts thriving."

The data shows the change in cafe spending per capita between November last year and July 2020.

Macarthur experienced some of the largest cafe spending growth across Sydney with Camden's spend growing by 82 per cent.

Campbelltown's cafe spending grew by 69 per cent and Wollondilly's grew by a whopping 103 per cent.

Argyle Business Collective president Andrew Valciukas said it was great to see more residents spending their money at local businesses.

"Obviously the data is extremely encouraging and we are finding that a number of Camden businesses are starting to improve with more people supporting their local haunts," he said.

"Obviously local businesses are still operating under restricted numbers due to Covid-19 - but I hope the consistent trade they are experiencing does continue."

Mr Valciukas said more people working from home were experiencing what the region has to offer.

"I think people across NSW who typically work in an office environment are missing that social interaction they generally have every day - water cooler talk is basically non-existent anymore," he said.

"So I think a lot of people are using that visit to a cafe for a coffee or a small meal as a way of getting that social interaction that they have been missing.

"I think we are seeing now more than ever how crucial, cafes, restaurants and hotels are to the social fabric of our community."

Mr Valciukas said he hoped the trend of supporting Macarthur's businesses continued.

"I think people are discovering what's available right on their doorstep," he said.

"It's hard to find anything positive about this pandemic but this is just one small positive thing to come out of it - as they say, every cloud has a silver lining."

Elsewhere in the southwest, cafe spending is up by 31 per cent in Liverpool and 22 per cent in Fairfield.

The Alphabeta data shows that the upward trend tends to drop the closer you get Sydney with Rockdale (-27 per cent), Ku-ring-gai (-8 per cent) and the inner west (-6 per cent) have shown the largest declines in spending.

However the Sutherland Shire bucked that trend with cafe spending growing by 43 per cent.

This story Cafe culture booms in Macarthur despite ongoing pandemic first appeared on Camden-Narellan Advertiser.