Prepare to Pay a “Wellness Fee” at this King of Prussia Restaurant

7 December 2023

Founding Farmers introduces a new wellness fee to support employee well-being and offset increased operating costs.

As the cost of dining out continues to rise, restaurants are finding new ways to cover expenses. One such method is the of a “wellness fee,” which has recently been implemented by Founding Farmers, a popular chain of restaurants. This fee aims to support employee health and provide additional benefits, while also addressing the rising costs of operation. While some customers may question the necessity of this fee, others appreciate the transparency and the opportunity to contribute to the well-being of the restaurant’s staff.

Wellness Fee: Supporting Employee Health and More
The wellness fee introduced by Founding Farmers is a five percent surcharge added to customers’ bills. According to the company’s website, this fee is intended to support free mental health resources for employees and their families, provide access to health insurance, and cover increased operating costs. However, it is important to note that the wellness fee is not considered a gratuity, but rather a means to maintain the value and standards that guests have come to expect.

Paid Sick Leave and Mental Health Support
One of the key components covered by the wellness fee is paid sick leave for employees who are unwell. This ensures that staff members can take time off when necessary without financial burden. Additionally, Founding Farmers offers mental health support services, including access to online therapy and unlimited text therapy through TalkSpace, for both employees and their immediate family members. By providing these resources, the restaurant acknowledges the importance of mental well-being in the workplace.

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Addressing Operating Costs and Increased Legislation
The wellness fee also contributes to offsetting the increased operating costs faced by Founding Farmers. This includes expenses related to labor costs, new wage-related legislation, and supply chain issues. The restaurant has experienced rising costs for items such as napkins, silverware, plates, aprons, kitchen uniforms, and equipment repair. These challenges, coupled with the financial impact of the pandemic, have necessitated the of the wellness fee to ensure the restaurant’s sustainability.

Balancing Value and Revenue
Some customers may question why Founding Farmers does not incorporate the wellness fee into menu prices. The company addresses this concern by explaining that certain price thresholds can influence guest buying behavior. If menu items are priced too high, customers may opt for lower-priced alternatives, resulting in lower overall sales. To maintain revenue without significantly increasing menu prices, Founding Farmers believes that the five percent wellness fee strikes a balance between affordability for guests and the financial stability of the business.


The of a wellness fee at Founding Farmers reflects the restaurant’s commitment to supporting employee well-being and addressing the challenges of operating in a post-pandemic landscape. By providing paid sick leave, mental health support, and access to health insurance, the restaurant aims to create a positive work environment for its staff. While some customers may question the necessity of this fee, Founding Farmers believes that it is a win-win solution that allows them to maintain value for guests while supporting their employees and covering increased operating costs. As the restaurant industry continues to evolve, the wellness fee serves as a reminder of the complex factors at play in ensuring the sustainability of restaurants in today’s challenging environment.

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