Will restaurants ever be the same again?
Restaurants will never be the same after coronavirus – but that may be a good thing. Jonathan Nunn’s article in The Guardian says that only a fundamental rethink will ensure their survival in the post-outbreak world.
As for restaurants themselves, chef Asma Khan of Darjeeling Express said the biggest issue is unionisation. “After this,” she says, “our priority should be to create a powerful union that is the voice of the workers, not the owners and investors.”
Pressure groups such as Jonathan Downey’s Hospitality Union, made up of restaurant owners and industry figureheads, are doing vital work in pushing for rent holidays and debt moratoriums while trying not to scare nervous landlords by saying “rent strike”. But this is fighting a problem caused by rampant capitalism on its own terms. Now is the time to start having honest conversations about food prices and supply chains, high rents and civic space, about who restaurants – or at least the ones that get coverage – really benefit.