Dabao F&B News
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Bite-sized latest news regarding the F&B sector, updated daily. Keep yourself up to date with what’s happening!
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Dabao F&B News
LIVELIHOOD OF RESTAURANTS AT RISK DUE TO UNCOOPERATIVE CUSTOMERS 1️⃣ F&B restaurant operators are struggling to deal with customers who arrive in groups of 6 or more and request for them to “close one eye” to their actions 2️⃣ Intermingling between two groups…
📌 Thoughts:

Business across the F&B sector has fallen significantly and has yet to recover to its previous heights. Some restaurant owners will turn a blind eye to intermingling and groups that exceed the allowed limit in exchange for business, but it simply isn’t worth it to get operations suspended for a few extra bucks.

Setting expectations by informing customers that your establishment will stick strictly to the rules will lessen the odds of such incidents happening. If there are any arguments, remain patient and appeal to their sense of compassion by playing the sympathy card, quoting you and your staff’s livelihood and the potential closure of the restaurant if the rules aren’t followed. If things still don’t go your way, just politely show them the way out.

Keeping your business operational is of utmost importance during this period so ensure your customers stick to the rules!
EXTENSION OF JOBS SUPPORT SCHEME
 
1️⃣ The Jobs Support Scheme scheduled to last till August will be extended till March 2021 

2️⃣Coverage across all industries will however be reduced from the original 25% - 75% to 10% - 50% 

3️⃣ F&B sector currently getting 50% wage support will be dropped to 30% during the extension  

4️⃣ Government will continue to monitor and listen to feedback regarding how to help companies get back on their feet during this period  
 
Full article 📰: https://bit.ly/34gx67r 
SOME RESTAURANTS STILL “TURNING A BLIND EYE” TO BIG GROUPS 

1️⃣ Some customers and F&B establishments are getting creative to circumvent social distancing rules in dining establishments 

2️⃣ 19 out of 20 restaurants contacted were willing to accept requests from diners over the number of 5, even going as far as suggesting to diners how to bend the rules and avoid being caught 

3️⃣ The restaurants respond that they accept such bookings as it’s “close to impossible” to identify if different seated groups are related while others blame it on slow business or not being aware of the updated ruling 

4️⃣ “Customers are frustrated too as they have to find loopholes by making multiple bookings or limit their social gatherings” 

Full article 📰: https://bit.ly/3j7KAXC 
HOUSEHOLDS ABOVE 5 PAX ABLE TO BOOK MORE THAN 1 TABLE IN THE SAME RESTAURANT

1️⃣ Family members from the same household that has more than 5 people can book more than 1 table when dining together in the same restaurant

2️⃣ 1m distancing rule still must be adhered to even between the family members and intermingling between the tables must be avoided entirely

3️⃣ Diners that are not from the same household are still not allowed to book more than 1 table

4️⃣ Background music in restaurants should also be softened to reduce cases of diners talking loudly without their masks on, causing droplets to spread

Full article 📰: https://bit.ly/3hnwvVh
Dabao F&B News
HOUSEHOLDS ABOVE 5 PAX ABLE TO BOOK MORE THAN 1 TABLE IN THE SAME RESTAURANT 1️⃣ Family members from the same household that has more than 5 people can book more than 1 table when dining together in the same restaurant 2️⃣ 1m distancing rule still must…
📌 Thoughts:

Two new important changes were mentioned in this article.

F&B restaurants can now accept multiple table bookings from the same household. This will probably be a good sign to many restaurants that previously catered to large families. It also shows that the Singapore government is slowly taking steps towards phase 3.

Secondly, restaurants are not allowed to play music loudly anymore. They are expected to keep it at “low” and “soft” levels. But this raises a question - how soft is soft? Everybody’s definition of soft is different, so let’s hope that clearer guidelines will be presented soon regarding this.
POPULAR CLUBS IN SINGAPORE TRANSFORM INTO F&B BUSINESSES

1️⃣ Some clubs like Zouk and Ce La Vi SkyBar have secured F&B licenses, turning the dance floor into a dining area to much success

2️⃣ Zouk’s Chief Executive Andrew Li says that they applied for a license very early during the circuit breaker period after hearing the government’s message to adapt to the current situation

3️⃣ Upskilling of staff and physical revamps are unavoidable to keep up with the times, with these clubs investing a hefty sum initially which appears to be a risk that’s paying off

4️⃣ Ce La Vi’s usual crowd of tourists have died out due to the COVID situation, forcing them to get creative by featuring a rotating line-up of local guest chefs and hawkers every month from as low as $10 to cater to the local crowd

Full Article 📰: https://bit.ly/2Yt0KTl
Dabao F&B News
POPULAR CLUBS IN SINGAPORE TRANSFORM INTO F&B BUSINESSES 1️⃣ Some clubs like Zouk and Ce La Vi SkyBar have secured F&B licenses, turning the dance floor into a dining area to much success 2️⃣ Zouk’s Chief Executive Andrew Li says that they applied for…
📌 Thoughts:

Survival is top priority for nightlife businesses, and many of them are coming up with new and innovative ways to overcome the hurdles presented. Never say die and try to make the best out of the situation.

Take Zouk for example; their whole business model initially revolved around party-goers and clubbers exclusively, but with the implementation of Capital Kitchen which started as a desperate bid to stay afloat in these tough times, they have stumbled upon another possible avenue for profit. It’s so successful that Zouk is considering making it permanent. 
$500 SCHEME FOR HAWKERS TO ENGAGE FOOD DELIVERY PLATFORMS TO BE EXTENDED TILL END 2020

1️⃣ The fund was initiated in April and due to end on June 30, but applications have continued to flood in and are still being accepted until the end of 2020

2️⃣ 1,200 applications have been approved as of 21st of August, alleviating their concerns of subscribing to food delivery platforms who charge commissions between 25% to 32% for every order

3️⃣ This extension of the funds is partially due to the Government’s digitalisation efforts under the Hawkers Go Digital scheme

4️⃣ This article also briefly explains the Hawkers’ Development Programme which consists of 3 stages: basic food safety and social media/food delivery apps courses followed by a two months apprenticeship under experienced hawkers and finally a incubation stall that enjoys a 40% rebate for 15 months

Full article 📰: https://bit.ly/3lAe9TJ
CASE STUDY: THE STRUGGLES OF A RESTAURANTEUR DURING THE PANDEMIC

This article is a good read as it perfectly encapsulates the collapse of the F&B industry from a restauranteur’s point-of-view. Tay Eu-Yen is a nightlife/F&B entrepreneur with notable accomplishments in the F&B industry like the establishment of iconic The Butter Factory and being a founding member of the Singapore Nightlife Business Association. This well-written piece details her observations and thoughts throughout the unprecedented ordeal while shedding some light on the struggles and difficult decisions that restaurant owners have had to make. I’ll definitely recommend everybody to skim through this article if you have a couple minutes to spare!

Full article 📰: https://bit.ly/3gGO5m3
MANY HAWKERS OPEN TO CASHLESS PAYMENT DESPITE THEIR AGE

1️⃣ Mr Lee Fook Choi, 75, learnt about the Singapore Quick Response Code (SGQR) e-payment system when digital ambassadors dropped by his stall to promote its use under the Hawkers Go Digital scheme

2️⃣ Mr Lee is among the 5,400 hawkers in Singapore who has started utilizing the e-payment method

3️⃣ Hawkers who sign up for the SGQR system under the Hawkers Go Digital scheme are eligible for a bonus of $300 a month up to a total of $1,500 as long as they log a minimum of 20 transactions of more than $1 each in a month

4️⃣ Recently, with the COVID-19 pandemic and more awareness regarding the SGQR system, there’s an increasing number of customers utilizing the cashless transaction

Full article 📰: https://bit.ly/3gIpj57
COVID19 THE PERFECT OPPORTUNITY FOR BUSINESSES TO GO GREEN

1️⃣ COVID19 forced restaurants struggling to stay afloat to seek delivery options, drastically increasing disposable cutlery and plastic waste

2️⃣ 1,334 tonnes of additional disposable cutlery were produced in the first 8 weeks of quarantine on top of 271 million plastic items Singaporeans normally dispose of in a typical 8-week period

3️⃣ Adrian Houghton, director of Tadcaster, implemented recycling systems and found biodegradable & compostable alternatives, decreasing the company’s annual disposal of plastic waste admirably

4️⃣ This change did not cost anything and even brought in additional business with some Singaporeans moving to patronize one of Adrian’s restaurant upon seeing its plastic-free promotion

Full article 📰: https://bit.ly/3h3Z2OL
GUIDE TO RUNNING YOUR EATERY IN A PANDEMIC

Hong Kong-based hospitality group Black Sheep Restaurants came up with a guide on how to run a restaurant in a pandemic situation. It started out as an internal set of protocols for the 27 restaurants under them which has since blew up once it was shared online in April with a total of 5,000 downloads to date. It is available in a few different languages and has been read not only by restaurant owners but also government officials, academics and people in the fashion industries. Even though Black Sheep clocked financial losses for the first time since 2012, Mr Hussain, co-founder of Black Sheep Restaurants, is optimistic for the future.

The guide is informative and easy to digest. It details recommended protocols and measures to take in order to ensure smooth operations. A must read if you find yourself still trying to figure certain things out!

Check out the guide here 📃: https://bit.ly/3250kET

Full article 📰: https://bit.ly/334a41p
NO MORE WARNINGS FOR F&B BUSINESSES WHO BREACH SAFE DISTANCING RULES

1️⃣ As of Wednesday, 9th of September, authorities will no longer issue warnings to F&B establishments who breach safe distancing rules, even for first-time offenders in favour of immediate action

2️⃣ “Enough time has transpired for the entire F&B industry and diners to understand what the rules are and to comply with them,” says Mr Lawrence Wong

3️⃣ A small number of restaurants are still taking their chances due to the safety net provided by the “first-time offender” privilege and it’s unfair for the other operators who are abiding by the law

Full article 📰: https://bit.ly/35LJn4Q
EATERIES IN CBD STRUGGLE POST-QUARANTINE, WORSENED BY WITHDRAWAL OF FINANCIAL AID

1️⃣ F&B outlets in the CBD report that business is still only a small fraction of what it used to be as many workers in the area are still working from home or in office on a rotational basis

2️⃣ Many of these establishments have only been able to remain open for so long due to government assistance and now with it being scaled back, owners of the eateries are getting desperate

3️⃣ Mr. and Mrs. Lam, owners of The Sandwich Shop are hoping that rental relief can be structured according to location so the funding can help out where its needed the most while being scaled back at areas that have recovered

Full article 📰:https://bit.ly/3mxRGH9
HIGH-END RESTAURANTS BUSINESS BLOOMING 

It appears that Singaporeans are visiting high-end restaurants in droves post-quarantine, drastically improving their businesses. The restaurants are packed on weekends and some weekday nights, booked full weeks in advance. “Revenge dining” is mentioned in this article, explaining the phenomenon where Singaporeans attempt to make up for lost time during the quarantine by dining out with a vengeance presently.  

Numerous restaurants reported clocking some of their best sales performances in years right after the quarantine was lifted. The chefs have not stayed idle during the quarantine period as well, conjuring up new creations and improving on their menu offerings while polishing their skills.

A good read as these restaurants that were staring down a gun barrel merely a couple of months back are absolutely flourishing right now.  

Full article: https://bit.ly/3cbVklb
INSTANT NOODLES THAT ARE GOOD FOR HEALTH & THE PLANET

1️⃣ Co-founder of food science start-up NamZ Chris Langwallner has come up with healthy instant noodles made from moringa and Bambara groundnut, crops he call future-fit with the ability to withstand degraded land and climate change

2️⃣ Unlike standard instant noodles which are dehydrated through deep-frying using unhealthy oil, the healthy instant noodles marketed as NoodleZ are produced using a different method which results in a 70% decrease in fat content

3️⃣ 12 crops and 5 animals make up 75% of the food we consumed, with three plants making up 60% of our calories

4️⃣ Degraded land continues to grow at an alarming rate due to intensive and unsustainable agriculture practices while new areas are being deforested to replace these plots of land, leading to increased carbon footprint

Full article📰: https://bit.ly/33PEntn
NEA’S INCUBATION STALL PROGRAMME HELPING TO TIDE FIRST-TIME HAWKERS OVER COVID-19

1️⃣ More than 105 applicants have applied to set up hawker stalls since the programme’s launch in February 2018, of which 28 were successful

2️⃣ Ms Lim, one of the beneficiaries of this program, commented that they saved up to $4,000 in start-up costs and only had to fork out $8,000

3️⃣ The rental rebates up to 50% at the beginning also helped tremendously in phase 2 while the F&B sector was struggling to recover from the crippling blow dealt to them during the quarantine

4️⃣ To be eligible for this programme, applicants must have either attended the Introduction to managing a Hawker Business course ran by ITE or graduate with a business management course offered at a tertiary institution

Full article 📰: https://bit.ly/2ZVimbs
TACKLING THE F&B AND NIGHTLIFE SCENE FROM A DIFFERENT ANGLE

This article takes a look at the Schwartz power couple, Joshua and Sarissa and how they’ve built an empire in Singapore’s night life scene under the SJS Group banner. The two SJS Group founders have always had a unique – others might use the word “risky” instead – way of doing things. They forcibly set personal preferences aside and focused on building venues that they felt the market wanted or needed.

The number of thriving nightclubs and bars under the SJS Group’s umbrella is a testament to their ability and uncanny eye for concepts and trends.

“We always start with a feeling,” Joshua said. “We open these places because we feel a passion about them. The overriding theme is to create a feeling of being somewhere else.”

This shows the importance of pre-emptive market research to determine what the market’s wants and needs are as well as if there are any gaps in service.

Read the full article here: https://bit.ly/2ZYpjbI
SINGAPORE FOOD EXPO STILL HAPPENING ONLINE 

1️⃣ Singapore Food Manufacturer’s Association (SFMA) will still be going ahead with the iconic Singapore Food Expo, just with it being online and on a smaller scale  

2️⃣ It will feature 52 vendors compared to last year’s 104  

3️⃣ The focus this year is to encourage and help Singaporean food manufacturers digitalise their businesses  

4️⃣ Ms Low, Minister of State for Culture, Community and Youth as well as Trade and Industry, emphasizes on the need for manufacturers to transform their business due to the pandemic by pivoting towards e-commerce and how Singapore Food United e-commerce platform will help make this happen 

Full article 📰: https://bit.ly/2S7N2Sq 
32 DINERS FINED $300 EACH WHILE 8 F&B OUTLETS ORDERED TO CLOSE 

1️⃣ This flurry of fines happened after the Government announced on Sept 9 that F&B outlets and diners who breach safety management measures will be penalised on their first offence and that there will be no more second chances 

2️⃣ The reasons for the fines remain similar with failure to enforce safe distancing measures and admitting groups bigger than 5 or serving alcohol after the cut-off time of 10.30 pm

3️⃣ People are starting to get complacent with the diminishing community COVID-19 cases, no longer masking up after a meal as fast as they used to 

Full article 📰: https://bit.ly/3jfffTj