In this file:

 

·         Restaurants pivot to groceries and meal kits to save business during the COVID-19 pandemic

As dining rooms empty, restaurants, like Founding Farmers, set up markets to feed consumers

 

·         Restaurant chains launch recession-like deals on delivery and takeout orders

Subway, Taco Bell, Jack in the Box, KFC, Del Taco and Chipotle look to drive off-premise transactions through free delivery and markdowns on takeout as dine-in operations come to a near halt across the U.S.

 

 

 

Restaurants pivot to groceries and meal kits to save business during the COVID-19 pandemic

As dining rooms empty, restaurants, like Founding Farmers, set up markets to feed consumers

 

Holly Petre, Nation's Restaurant News 

Mar 20, 2020

 

Restaurants across the country have had to shutter dine-in areas due to local and state-wide restrictions to prevent spread of the coronavirus. Many operators have turned their focus to traditional off-premise, but, some independent and chain restaurants have pivoted to selling groceries to keep afloat.

 

Washington, D.C.-based Farmers Restaurant Group laid off 1,000 people this week, keeping only management and chefs who then had their salaries reduced by 70%. Dan Simons, co-owner, choose to remake his restaurants — including Founding Farmers, Farmers & Distillers and Farmers Fishers Bakers — into markets working with his remaining staff.

 

“There’s a reason people cook at home; it’s less expensive,” said Simons, which is why Farmers Market + Grocery, the newly named bodega concept, won’t charge typical dine-in prices.

 

The corner market or bodega will be set up within the restaurant in the next 24-48 hours and sell meal kits cooked by the remaining restaurant staff along with packaged chicken salad, toilet paper, paper towels, wine, beer (in growlers) and other essentials.

 

The restaurant’s bakery will remain open to produce bread as well.

 

Customers will pull up to the restaurant, place an order either in person or online and a staff member will bring out the order.

 

“The supply chain for restaurants is different than grocery stores. The demand is so huge [for grocery stores] and I can also get a huge box of toilet paper but what I don’t have is toilet paper wrapped in plastic. I buy eggs in cases of 144 and I’ll have to put them into something smaller,” said Simons.

 

The Farmers Market + Grocery will package the goods for consumers. Sure, products will look a bit different than what’s for sale at a grocery, but Simons is betting when supplies are low, consumers won’t care what they look like.

 

Simons and his team at Farmers are trying to hack their current technology to make orders for the market work.

 

By using the restaurants existing OpenTable reservation system, Simons believes they can...

 

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https://www.nrn.com/operations/restaurants-pivot-groceries-and-meal-kits-save-business-during-covid-19-pandemic

 

 

Restaurant chains launch recession-like deals on delivery and takeout orders

Subway, Taco Bell, Jack in the Box, KFC, Del Taco and Chipotle look to drive off-premise transactions through free delivery and markdowns on takeout as dine-in operations come to a near halt across the U.S.

 

Nancy Luna, Nation's Restaurant News  

Mar 20, 2020

 

With the move to off-premise only operations, chains are acting swiftly to launch promotions including Subway, Chipotle Mexican Grill, El Torito, Chevys, Boston Market, Jamba, Dickey’s Barbecue Restaurants, El Torito, Noodles & Company and Jack in the Box.

 

Deals are reminiscent of discounts chains offer during a recession. Discounts include markdowns on signature items, large to-go orders, and free delivery.

 

In a recession, economists will tell you that the restaurant industry is one of the first sectors to get hit as consumers hold off on discretionary spending. While no one has declared a recession yet (GDP must decline for more than two consecutive quarters, first), there’s no doubt restaurants are seeing rapid revenue declines because of the COVID-19 outbreak as dine-in operations have come to a near halt across the U.S.

 

The need for takeout and delivery services will become even greater in New York and California, where governors of those states have told residents to stay at home as much as possible. 

 

“I do expect steep discounting as restaurants fight to be the destination for the soon-to-be pent-up demand,” said restaurant analyst Tim Powell of Foodservice IP in Chicago.

 

Subway, which just announced the systemwide closure of dining rooms in North America, sent consumers a $5.99 coupon for a Footlong sandwich this week via email. That’s a savings of about 50 cents to $1, depending on the sandwich. The coupon is valid through March 22 for takeout and drive-thru locations only.

 

Here’s a roundup of other brands offering coronavirus-related discounts:

 

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https://www.nrn.com/quick-service/restaurant-chains-launch-recession-deals-delivery-and-takeout-orders