The top 500 foodservice operators are dominating the U.S. market in more ways than one. First, they control over 50% of retail sales. More impressive, perhaps, is the fact that in the aggregate they are experiencing annual growth of 9% -- a rate that nearly doubles that of the rest of the market.These findings, among others, are presented in Technomic's latest report on the foodservice industry, the Technomic Top 500. Whereas other Technomic reports focus exclusively on chain restaurants, the Top 500 expands its coverage into all categories of foodservice operations, including foodservice management firms, supermarkets, lodging, military, nursing homes, convenience stores, recreation and numerous others.Not surprisingly, chain restaurants dominate the list. Quick-service restaurants alone represented over 44% of all sales among the Top 500. The major contributor to the dominance of quick service chains is McDonald's, ranking #1 on the Top 500 list with over $19 billion in 1999 U.S. sales.At #500 on the list, on the other hand, is Aladdin Food Management Services, Inc., a Wheeling, WV-based foodservice management firm with $40 million in U.S. sales. The remainder of the Top 500 includes a diverse group of operators, segmented into 18 different categories. Taken together, the Top 500 represent nearly $210 billion, or 50.7% of total 1999 U.S. sales.By consolidating these groups into four major categories, the market dominance of the Top 500 is demonstrated in the chart below. Restaurants, for example, appearing in the Top 500 list control nearly 60% of total U.S. restaurant sales.