Picture: REUTERS/SIMON DAWSON
Picture: REUTERS/SIMON DAWSON

The past year-and-a-half has brought countless challenges for restaurants, from the early days when restaurant operators were forced to think on their feet as sudden shutdown orders brought dine-in business to a halt, to current struggles with cash flow and vaccinations.

During the course of the pandemic, restaurants have had to reinvent themselves countless times — ramping up off-premises sales, exploring virtual brands and rallying around their communities to support people in need. Now the industry needs those same communities to rally around it.

SA, like most countries, cannot afford for its hospitality industry to fail. With it would go thousands of businesses — cheesemakers, farmers, bakers and winemakers — and millions of jobs. SA’s hospitality industry faces another complication — it leans heavily on tourism.

Michael Avery spoke to Ocean Basket CEO Grace Harding; McCain Foodservice & Retail marketing manager Catharina Bester; and Bridgement co-founder Daniel Goldberg about what lies ahead for restaurants.

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