Coping Up The Impact of Pandemic Challenges
Food & Beverage Business Review|December 2020 - January 2021
As with other industries, the food and beverage sector is making endeavors to bounce back in business.
Sharmila Chand

The impact of the pandemic has been a severe blow in a number of ways. Yet, the F&B professionals are upbeat and hopeful about regaining the confidence of their guests through planned strategies. We ask experts to share with us how they are gearing up to face the situation and adapted to the ‘New Normal’.

Strategies & Processes In Place

Praveen Shetty, Executive Chef, Conrad

Bengaluru

“As we were gearing up and redefining our safety assurance with our guests, our hygiene manager worked together to ensure every corner of the hotel, from the lobby to guestrooms, to our back areas were hygienically well equipped and maintained.

Conrad brand always tries to aspire in every way, never just stay, stay inspired has always been experiencing. During the time when the lockdown phase was lifted and guests started visiting our restaurants and enjoying their staycations, to give them assurance on their very first step, with the global Hilton CleanStay program already in place and with time and tested from our local traditional drink Kashayam infused with a couple of immunity-boosting ingredients was served as their welcome drink.

Conrad Bengaluru has accredited with ISO 22000: 2018 certification wherein preparation, cooking, and serving food and beverages within the premises are in accordance with industries management standard procedure. And it is one of the few hotels to have this accreditation and to have an in-house Lab to check each and every process since the pre-opening stage of our hotel. All food items were thoroughly washed. Fruits and vegetables (which are to be consumed raw) are being washed in 50 ppm chlorine and clean potable water before storage since the beginning of the hotel operations.”

It is mandatory for all the team members to wear gloves, masks, and face shields in all areas related to operations. We have included measures such as separate entrance and exit doors at the restaurants, availability of hand sanitizers, reimagined table set up, updated floor plans, disinfection of chairs & tables after every use, and revamped reservations system. No collaterals are kept on the table as we have gone digital with our menus and payments. Crockery/Cutlery is only placed, once the guest gets seated.

To avoid cross-contamination, restaurant and bar areas are roped off during nonoperational hours. We have clearly demarcated the roles and sections for servers and runners and defined primary routes for the flow of food and guests to limit interaction between guests and colleagues.

For In-Room Dining services, the server would not enter the room of the guests. The guests shall collect the food from the trolley at the entrance.

“Health, immunity, and safety are the buzzwords of the season and our Menu Planning is based on primarily these three aspects. Assuring our guests with the right communication strategy with respect to enhanced cleanliness protocols and safety measures is the key to infuse confidence amongst our guests”

Sumit Sinha, Director of Food and Beverage, Crowne Plaza Today New Delhi Okhla

Assisted Buffet:

We have discontinued self-service buffets at our restaurants. We are offering Assisted Buffet Service at our all-day dining restaurant Edesia for (Breakfast/ Lunch/Dinner), weddings, and other social events to minimize common touchpoints and enhance safety levels. With our servers standing behind the dish counters and unloading food on the plates of the guests, multiple contacts with the ladle is avoided. Floor markers have been placed across the buffet station to ensure adequate distancing. In fact, if we have curated special Breakfast/ Lunch/Dinner On The Table menus for the guests to enjoy the variety of dishes with a personalized touch.

Sumit Gulati, Managing Partner, and Owner, Spice Market

• We did not fire a single employee and did not give them any pay cuts. We motivated them instead to put in more effort and help us take our delivery brands to greater heights through consistency of food quality, feedback mechanisms, and speed of delivery.

• We did not shut a single day this year including Diwali night and used the lockdown as an opportunity to make new customers.

• We introduced new products and services during lockdown such as WhatsApp Ordering for all our brands, introduced Asian and Pizza cuisines in our brand ‘Call Chotu.’

Focus in Menu Planning

Praveen Shetty, Executive Chef, Conrad Bengaluru

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