79 percent of restaurant owners and managers fear a second lockdown will negatively impact their business as the Government’s three tier restriction increases across the UK. A further 84 percent believe that the UK government should be doing more to help independent restaurants during this time, according to the latest research released by Foodhub..
Restaurant and takeaway owners in the worst hit regions are feeling the strain of the second lockdown due to the severe impact on the hospitality industry within these areas. Independent restaurants are fighting back by future-proofing their business as 88 percent of restaurants offer some kind of takeaway service to continue serving their customers. Another 10 percent are investigating the options with many stating they wanted to better serve their customers (42 percent) and improve revenue streams (30 percent). Yet, 27 percent say that the biggest challenge around offering delivery is a lack of drivers (27 percent) and mounting costs (21 percent).
Restaurants are turning to the Government for more support, despite the measures put in place in the Chancellor’s Winter Spending plan as 64 percent said this is not enough to support their business and a further half of restaurants saying they would like another “eat out to help out” scheme. An additional 48 percent would prefer longer furlough, 41 percent would like further rates relief and four in ten want assistance with rent.
Surveying restaurant owners and managers across the UK, Foodhub has uncovered the industry’s sentiment towards the current climate, its optimism for growth and key challenges expected within the new 12 months. Amongst its findings, the research revealed that 54 percent of operators are concerned about the next twelve months, with 81 percent believing that Covid-19 is the biggest barrier to growth for the next year. When asked what other challenges restaurants would face within the next 12 months, 41 percent believe that a recession will harm trade, 26 percent believe restricted customer spending and 16 percent of operators are worried about mounting costs.
While the restaurant and takeaway industry is set to face ongoing challenges within the next year, over two thirds (72 percent) say they have seen a significant upturn in online orders. Additionally, 52 percent of respondents said their main goal was growth over the next year; with 42 percent aiming to become more sustainable. What’s more, 41 percent say they would like the ability to offer discounts to improve spending, while 34 percent are going to explore ways that technology can enable them to future-proof their businesses.
Philip Mostyn, Chief Operating Officer of Foodhub said: “The Government three tier restrictions have proven highly disruptive towards restaurants across the country. Businesses have had their hours reduced and undoubtedly sentiments across the sector are of uncertainty and anxiety on what this will mean for the future of hospitality. It is highly encouraging to see the industry remain so resilient and optimistic towards their growth, despite suffering drastic blows since the first lockdown in March.