Restaurant Good News Roundup: October
Another month down, and restaurateurs across all segments face major obstacles. In the last quarter of 2020, the restaurant industry eagerly awaits the proposed $120B earmarked for the industry as part of a second stimulus bill. Unfortunately, a partisan debate is holding up that bill, leaving the possibility of government relief uncertain. Some believe that there is no return to “normal;” the pandemic has revealed problems at the industry’s that need resolution first. Fortunately, many are working to realize that change by giving back to the community and getting involved in politics to affect their policies. We look at this and more in our Restaurant Good News Roundup: October edition, diving into the brightest lights during the darkest times.
Rock Legend Riley Gale Gets a Kuma Burger
In August, the rock and heavy metal community lost a treasure in Riley Gale, singer for the band Power Trip. Gale’s kindness and empathy were the stuff of legends, taking the time to talk to fans and treat each person with respect, advocating for the best in everyone. For Gale, music was about community and friendship. His impact on the world around him was such that he has since had both a library and a Kuma burger named in his honor, immortalizing him for future generations. Proceeds from the sale of the limited-time burger at Kuma’s Corner were donated to Dallas Hope Charities. Rest in Power. “The goal is to manifest higher than before.”
Helping the Unemployed & Restaurants
The Hawaii Chamber of Commerce recently developed a plan to help restaurants and people in need. Until December 15th (2020), Hawaiians collecting unemployment will receive a $500 card for local restaurants. The cards cover all restaurant expenses (including alcohol) and aim to stimulate local business. The goal is to save jobs while also putting tax money back into the community. Data indicates that every dollar spend returns $1.82 to the Hawaiian economy and can save up to 1K jobs.
Good News For McDonald’s
In early-October, McDonald reported that they’d shaved 30 seconds off of their drive-thru time. They attribute these efforts to a few factors, like canceling their all-day breakfast and dynamic yield screens in their drive-thrus. Additionally, McDonald’s found success with their recent Travis Scott meal, a promotional deal with the rapper that took off. Now, the company is working with reggaeton artist J Balvin, hoping to strike gold twice.
Yelp Fights Bigotry
The specter of racism and ugliness has long been a threat to marginalized voices around the U.S. and beyond, with tensions over discrimination reaching a head in late-May earlier this year. Many restaurants have responded with sympathy to the protests, working to feed protesters and serving as safe, neutral spaces to meet. The phenomenon of bigotry directed at ethnic restaurants, in general, is nothing new, unfortunately, and not relegated to any one place. In response to the many stories surrounding discrimination, Yelp has stepped up to help fight bigotry by allowing users to label businesses based on their alleged racism. The move is controversial, as the site is crowd-sourced, but Yelp has stated that they will monitor each situation and address them accordingly.
Science for Safer Restaurants
At a recent STEM event, an all-girl coding team developed an app that could change restaurants’ futures for the better. The app rates restaurants on their pandemic safety initiatives. Anxious over the state of the world, before their team exercise, these women have developed apps for mental health awareness and college campus safety. The Safe Bites app intends to rank restaurants based on their commitment to health consciousness and public safety initiatives. In development, the application will help users find the safest dining spot nearby while giving restaurateurs helpful tips on staying pandemic-safe. The team took home the first place award at the recent MIT Hackathon.
As we forge into the winter, there are concerns over cooler climates, minimizing outdoor seating potential, which has supported restaurants through an arduous year. Fortunately, savvy entrepreneurs seek smart, safe solutions, from enhanced internal safety protocols to enhancing their curbside delivery operations. All signs point to a steadfast resilience in the restaurant industry to persevere from this crisis and come out stronger on the other side. To complement that, the public is eager for the industry’s success, with studies indicating that guests are ready willing to return to indoor dining.
Did we miss anything in our Restaurant Good News Roundup: October edition? Let us know in the comments below.
How has the pandemic altered your course? Click the link below for our page containing helpful restaurant resources for the COVID-19 outbreak.
About the Author
Syd is a content marketing specialist, which are fancy words for writing pretty to tell a good story. He likes writing things about food, drinks, and music. He’s a musician himself, a father of two, and loves his wife a whole lot. At home, like the rest of the world right now, he’s finding time to play with the kids and create art.