PORT WASHINGTON N.Y. The restaurant industry collected about $27.8 billion in total sales in January, a 2-percent gain from sales in the same month a year earlier, despite logging 1-percent fewer visits from consumers, according to data from research firm NPD Group. The slight uptick in sales, which was the slowest rate of growth within the prior five months, was attributed to increases in average checks, which offset the slower rate of consumer traffic, NPD said. The traffic slowdown ...

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