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The foodservice industry has been described as a lot of things over the years but most recently it can best be described as resilient and agile. Since the Government announced indoor venue closures as at noon on 23 March, thousands of businesses have shown tremendous agility. The ones that were able to swiftly created takeaway and home delivery menus or pivoted into retail, enabling their businesses to keep trading and staff to remain employed.

Here’s a look at what some venues are doing in this difficult period.
Bella Vista Hotel
Momento Hospitality’s Group including Executive Chef, Sam Youngs, had the idea to create a drive-through shop in the large warehouse space behind the hotel. This would help to use up the food and alcohol that they had on hand at the time of the closures, plus essentials like toilet paper, which were missing from supermarket shelves.

The concept has proved popular with locals with Essential Express also including signature offerings such as meat trays, shake and serve cocktails, homemade pizza bases and pizza sauces and most recently the addition of Food Trucks. Contactless drive-through service is set up, so customers stay in the car whilst being served by staff who wear masks and gloves and then pack all the goods in the car. Essentials Express has allowed the business and its staff to keep engaging with the local community with the profits going towards keeping staff employed.
Essentials Express by Bella
HospoMarket was opened by Food Equity Group, which includes General Chao, Stretch Italian and The Steam Engine on 3 April and is a brand-new industry focused convenience store at Chatswood Interchange, which includes ‘click and collect” and contactless home delivery services.

HospoMarket brings together local restaurants, allowing them to promote chilled ready-meals on their website, where customers can place their order. It also retails pantry staples, like pasta, rice, bottle drinks, sauces and snacks from foodservice manufacturers and distributors. It’s allowed North Shore hospitality businesses to pivot and use their under-utilised kitchens, staff, equipment and resources property, equipment, staff and other resources, which has helped them retain their staff and ultimately survive. 

For example, the new model has allowed the Food Equity Group to immediately save the jobs of 21 full-time staff with plans to re-employ casual staff as demand increases.
Visit HospoMarket
Mounties Group
Mounties Group prides itself on being more than a club, but also a community and they’ve stayed true to their ethos during Covid-19 finding various ways to benefit their members. They’re doing welfare checks for members and developed a “Mounties Care” hotline providing health tips for members.

On the foodservice side, they have also launched Mounties Delivers, which is an online ordering and delivery service of essential products direct to households. These include meat, grocery packs and more. And while Ignite Health & Fitness is temporarily closed they have created virtual fitness classes and are also renting out fitness equipment.
Visit Mounties Delivers
Parklife Popup Coffee
Paul McDonald from Parklife popup coffee in Terrigal looked at how he could pivot his business, but the result has also seen increased community spirit. It was just the first step to implement contactless takeaway and drive through. Offering people an opportunity to gift “Survival Box” meals and fresh food boxes was a stroke of genius that has been embraced by customers and all for the benefit of frontline medical staff.
Adopt a Healthcare Worker
Young George
Melissa Palinkas from Young George in East Fremantle, WA, has successfully pivoted her business by offering takeaway and changing her dining room into a deli, grocery store and. The essence of the business remains and continues to champion local producers. It’s a change that has received a huge amount of community support and has allowed them to focus on their customers.
Order from Young George now

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