For the last decade, fast-casual restaurants have sprung up all around the U.S. serving high-quality food in a casual setting, pushing the envelope on what is possible in a counter-service format. And since 2017, QSR magazine has recognized those emerging concepts with the 40/40 List, a report on 40 exciting fast-casual brands with fewer than 40 locations.

QSR announced that it is now accepting submissions for the 2021 40/40 List, particularly searching for startup concepts that have withstood the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic and have plans to once again expand.

“We love shining the spotlight on emerging brands that have a ton of growth potential, which is why we launched the 40/40 List in the first place,” says QSR editor Sam Oches. “2020 clearly has been a challenging year for these brands, but we’re finding that so many of them have been resilient in the face of adversity. And that resilience is setting them up for brighter things ahead.”

To be considered for the 40/40 List, restaurants should have more than one but fewer than 40 locations, have plans to actively scale, and have not been included on the 40/40 List in the past. The final list will be published in QSR’s February 2021 issue.

To submit your brand for the 40/40 List, click here and fill out the information no later than 11:59 p.m. EST on November 11.

Emerging Concepts, Fast Casual, News