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How The Pandemic Has Changed The Food Industry

How The Pandemic Has Changed The Food Industry

COVID-19 has continued to make drastic changes to all sectors of businesses, including the food industry. Many of these businesses have been forced to make modifications to adhere to the times.

While you can go on and look at it from a bad angle, this is not the ideal outlook. Readjust accordingly and persevere. Your business has been through hardship before, and it can certainly do it again.

Food processing companies in the UAE like Sweetheart Kitchen, are adapting to the current pandemonium, as are many other food distribution and food service companies.

Today, we’re going to be taking a look at how these companies are working to implement change, and hopefully, your business can do the same thing.

It’s no secret that the COVID-19 pandemic is ushering in a new type of reality for the hospitality industry, and the impacts of guest behavior are chief among concerns for the operators involved in these processes.

With 41 percent of restaurant owners believing the biggest reopening challenge they face is a slow but steady return of customers, earning consumer trust is important, now more than ever. 

Keep reading below to have a better understanding of what businesses are doing to stay afloat. It’s challenging for many, but by no means is it an impossible journey to undertake. A plethora of these owners are in this for the long haul, and they will eventually be on the other side of this.

 

Curbside Delivery, Pick-up and More

It’s a new trend that we’ve seen continually grow since the inception of the virus. Since there is a lot of debate of transmission occurring for patrons who are accustomed to indoor dining, many restaurants have put a halt to indoor seating.

Instead, they are enforcing curbside delivery or pickup, online food ordering, and outdoor seating. This isn’t meant to inconvenience anyone, it’s just meant to promote safety and curb the spread of the virus in the process. 

With that being said, since many states have been in phase 2 of the reopening, certain food chains are permitting indoor dining, but at limited occupancy. 

Sure enough, it’s working, and the food industry is getting accustomed to the new normal, especially Food processing companies in the Uae like Sweetheart Kitchen. 

Online food order companies are doing everything in their power to take the necessary precautions. Take Chick-Fil-A, for example. They have completely suspended their dining room, and are only accepting mobile and drive-thru orders. 

Naturally, it’s a large corporation, so as long as they continue to turn a profit, not much else will stand in their way of facilitating these online food orders. 

All restaurants and food processing companies in the Uae will be dealing with a different consumer who will be hesitant to be in close proximity to other patrons and they will be all in on the health and safety practices of the restaurant they are dining at. 

They may not want to dive back into the on-premise dining experience right away, and can you blame them, but as previously stated, there are many ways to ensure guests are comfortable visiting the dining room when they feel secure to do so.

The restaurant of the future will need to evolve to meet the demands of customers in terms of health and safety. 

As states begin to reopen all of their businesses, we expect to see shifts in floor plans and seating arrangements that will allow for more space between guests due to rules of social distancing, party size limits, and capacity guidelines. 

We can expect to see more extreme changes to restaurant layouts, such as the removal of bar seats to help with social distancing and the removal of host stands in favor of digital waitlists or other reservation models. 

To succeed in a post-COVID world, restaurants will need to revisit both their methods of dine-in and delivery and pickup options to enable a more seamless, and safe, experience for all of their customers.

Contactless Interactions

To go off of what was previously stated, restaurants are taking many precautions to spearhead a contactless system of interaction with patrons. 

The restaurant industry is rising to meet these expectations, making a transition into the digital realm with contactless payments, ordering, delivery, and much more. 

But the benefits don’t stop with operators providing guests and staff with safe, simple, and contactless choices for their food needs. 

These innovative features also allow operators to reduce the front of house costs for labor, while enhancing the frequency of orders, continuing to bring in large streams of revenue. 

In a time when 56 percent of restaurants have at least $50,000 they owe in debt, as a result of the virus, these reduced overhead costs, coupled with increased convenience and adoption on the customer side, is by far, a match made in heaven.

Operations and Technology

Operators need to think critically about how they connect their tech stack to enable them to collect and use data across dine-in, delivery, and pick-up platforms. 

With a clear view for every guest, operators can connect data across their entire guest experience, from when a guest makes a reservation or orders delivery, to how they order and pay, to the types of marketing they will get as a result.

Operators should focus on finding partners that offer: (1) capabilities that assist restaurants to build budding partnerships with all of their patrons, (2) a solid business model with a focus on the future and success of the restaurant, and (3) a robust CRM that allows its operators to own and access all of their guest data which provides stellar experiences for in and out of the dining room. 

Every piece of technology, whether it’s a dedicated sales system, guest experience platform or software that manages inventory, it should be useful for operators to capture and leverage this kind of data, bring in revenue, and monitor their costs. 

This is just one of the many ways operators can meet the demands of a hospitality industry that is continuing to change.

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