November 2020: Restaurant Good News Roundup
Another month, another intro about the hardships anyone in the industry already recognizes. Between colder weather stifling outdoor seating for capacity-capped restaurants, and a surge of coronavirus cases, the road to recovery looks long and daunting. Still, some segments are seeing success already, with many remaining optimistic about rebuilding. There’s plenty of good news, though. The U.S. election may see movement in helping the restaurant industry. Pfizer recently announced a vaccine with a 90% efficacy rating, which promises brighter days ahead. Let’s look at the brighter side of life in November 2020: restaurant good news roundup.
There are few stories more satisfying than a community coming together to help one another. That’s the case for Omaha, Nebraska restaurants, which worked to raise money for area non-profits. Part of an initiative from Block 16, a table-service restaurant specializing in burgers, the 10-Days of Giving non-profit drive is their way of showing appreciation to their community.
A recent Baltimore, Maryland initiative is aimed at reinvesting in the local community. Seven Maryland Credit Unions are offering reward points for shopping locally. The plan is to incentivize shopping at local businesses, including many area restaurants, by providing double rewards for cardholders in the area.
Elsewhere, Boston Mayoral candidate Michelle Wu has issued a report calling for food justice initiatives in her area. Wu and many like here are working to ensure an equitable future for both employees and the local community. Her plan emphasizes ending the tipped minimum wage, investing in local restaurants, and ending food deserts.
Everyone needs a helping hand sometimes, including the many displaced workers in the restaurant industry. The National Restaurant Association Educational Foundation is trying to help current and future restaurant workers with nearly 1 million dollars worth of college scholarships and grants. The scholarship money is meant to stimulate interest in the next generation of restaurateurs.
While not directly related to the restaurant industry, a group of young entrepreneurs formed mRelief, an organization dedicated to fighting food insecurity. Through mRelief, the team developed an app that helps people find and receive food stamps. This is directly useful to restaurant workers currently displaced by the pandemic. It offers critical guidance and support in receiving help, freeing up workers to pursue getting back on their feet.
Booming Business & Cross-Company Team-Ups
In light of the difficulties going on, it’s wonderful to see that some restaurant businesses are thriving. Recently, Chipotle and Yum! Brands have reported high quarters, with both signaling their commitment to technology and digital ordering strategies as key sales drivers. In the UK, Burger King reached across the divide to urge guests to support any restaurant, even competitors. While the UK market has been hit hard by the pandemic, Burger King (and many others) see this as an opportunity for solidarity in the industry to help one another pull through difficult times.
Delivering the Goods
Off-premise delivery has become an integral part of any restaurant strategy in the wake of the pandemic, with many relying on it to stay afloat. Without an existing internal delivery system in mind, restaurateurs have turned to third-party delivery services, which are often expensive and cut into tight budgets. Burdened by exorbitant fees, a group of friends put together the Delivery Co-Op, a locally owned and operated delivery service that minimizes fees to restaurants already struggling. Participating restaurateurs can apply for membership, which lowers their fees per meal.
Somehow, mask awareness is still imperative nine months into a global pandemic. With restaurants often the epicenter of viral contagion, masks are an important part of the recovery process. Even with the vaccine on the horizon, Dr. Fauci has urged U.S. citizens to continue socially distancing and wearing masks to avoid lockdowns and further outbreaks. To help make these recommendations a little more fun, Hormel has recently offered free, pork scented masks for consumers who want to breathe in that fresh, ham air.
November 2020: Restaurant Good News Roundup Conclusion
While things may seem grim, there are so many wonderful things to celebrate. Restaurants are increasingly recognized as the bedrock of local economies that we know them to be. New restaurants are opening, and politicians are working to help the restaurant industry get back on their feet. Did we miss anything in our November 2020: restaurant good news roundup edition? Sign off in the comments and let us know the great news!
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About the Author
Syd was a content marketing specialist, which are fancy words for writing pretty to tell a good story. He likes writing things about food, drinks, and music. He’s a musician himself, a father of two, and loves his wife a whole lot. At home, like the rest of the world right now, he’s finding time to play with the kids and create art.