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Welcome to the May, Week 3 edition of Bord Bia's Ireland Market Foodservice Newsletter.


A reminder that on Thursday, 28th May from 2- 3PM we will present findings from a White Paper that we are currently compiling on the Irish Foodservice market. This webinar is open to all and registration is available via our website here.


On a separate note, Bord Bia, in partnership with DCU are currently accepting applications for a fully funded MSc in Insights and Innovation.  This is an 18 month programme combining both university modules and a practical work placement.  Deadline for submission of CV and cover letter is Friday, May 29th at 5PM.  More information is available online here


General Industry News

Coronavirus round-up: Irish retailers set to resume trading

Business Post – 10.05.2020

Approximately 1,500 Irish retailers are set to resume trading next Monday in accordance with Phase One of the government’s plans to reopen the economy. David Fitzsimons, Chief Executive of lobby group Retail Excellence, said he expected the total cost of protective measures for staff and customers in those businesses to be between €3million and €7.5million. The measures, which he said could cost some stores €5,000 to install, will include hand sanitising stations, social distancing signage as well as protective screens. Garden and hardware centres, farmers markets, opticians, mechanics and electrical and phone repair stores will be amongst those outlets allowed to open from May 18th

Coronavirus round-up: Pandemic unemployment payments

Business Post – 08.05.2020

Covid-19 pandemic unemployment payments will be extended beyond mid-June, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar announced. The Taoiseach said no decision has been made on how long it will last for or if there will be a rate reduction after next month. The initiative, which was initially introduced for a period of 12 weeks, was set to remain in place until June 8. The latest figures from the Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection show that almost 600,000 people are dependent on the Covid-19 pandemic unemployment payment at present while more than 427,000 workers are having their wages subsidized under the temporary wage subsidy scheme.


Quick Service Restaurant (QSR) & Pub Sector

Subway to reopen a quarter of its circa 2,400 UK & Ireland estate

www.propelinfonews.ie – 12.05.2020

Subway is to open just over 600 stores, a quarter of its UK & Ireland estate, as part of a phased reopening plan. Starting Tuesday, 12 May, locally owned and operated stores will begin reopening with new operational and social distancing measures in place. Before rolling out the new plans, Subway tested them in the small number of sites it kept open to support key workers and hospital staff. Subway UK & Ireland director Colin Hughes said: “We have slowly and safely introduced a new store operating framework that will be rolling out across stores to protect guests, staff, delivery drivers and our suppliers. The weeks and months ahead will continue to be challenging for everyone and Subway will play its part in supporting the new normal whatever that may look and feel like.”

McDonald’s to reopen Irish restaurants from next week

The Irish Times – 12.05.2020

Fast food chain McDonald’s is to begin a phased reopening of restaurants in Ireland from next week, starting with a drive-through only service at six outlets in the Dublin area. McDonald’s UK and Ireland Chief Executive Paul Pomroy said updated Government guidelines make it clear that takeaways and deliveries can operate, and that as such the six restaurants will open from May 20th. He said the company would confirm the locations next week. “Moving in step with government guidelines, we plan to reopen all our drive-throughs by early June across the UK and Ireland,” he said. “As locations reopen, you will be able to search for a location near you on our website.” Minister for Agriculture Michael Creed said he welcomed the news. “McDonald’s is a valued key purchaser of Irish produce and an employer of a large number of people throughout Ireland,” he said.


Hotel & Restaurant Sector

‘Rush’ of applications expected as pubs can apply for licences to open as restaurants

Irish Examiner – 13.05.2020

Under the government’s roadmap to lifting Covid 19 restrictions restaurants and cafes can open in phase three, from June 29, but pubs, bars, nightclubs, and casinos have to keep their doors closed until phase five begins on August 10th. The plan states that this affects venues where social distancing and strict cleaning can be complied with. Today an application was made by the operators of the Two Sisters pub in Rathfarnham in Dublin to be certified as a restaurant. Counsel said that the licensing court was going to get a rush of pubs saying they are restaurants but they will have to prove they have previously operated as restaurants as well.

Flipdish extends food ordering service to include hotels

Hospitality Ireland - 13.05.2020

Dublin-based digital food ordering solution for independent eateries Flipdish has announced that it has extended its services to include hotel kitchens in Ireland to assist in setting up hotel restaurants for online orders and deliveries during the COVID-19 crisis. Among the first hotels that have signed up for Flipdish's services is Scholars Townhouse Hotel of Drogheda, Co. Louth, the owner of which, Mark McGowan, stated, "When we started offering the takeaway service, there was only one other eatery in the area offering takeaway at the time, so we didn't know how people would respond. Fortunately, people are really enjoying the option of being able to 'eat out, but eat in' that ordering from us is affording them, and it's great to have that community support. "Flipdish helped us get up and running almost immediately, so we were able to get our business back up and running as quickly as possible, which has made a huge difference for us."


Casual Dining & Contract Catering

M&S UK to open 49 cafes for takeaway hot drinks

www.propelinfonews.ie - 14.05.2020

Marks & Spencer UK is reopening 49 of its cafes for takeaway hot drinks only from Thursday 14th May. The stores that will open their cafes are located next to Foodhalls and follows a trial at five of the locations. The M&S cafes will reopen with strict safety measures in place, including Perspex screens at tills, extensive hygiene rules and clear signage to help customers social distance. One colleague only will also work behind counters and contactless payment is encouraged.

Ryanair plans to restore 40% of scheduled flights from July 1

Hospitality Ireland - 12.05.2020

Ryanair has announced that it is planning to restore 40% of its normal flight schedules from Wednesday July 1, subject to government restrictions on intra-EU flights being lifted, and effective public health measures being put in place at airports. The airline will operate a daily flight schedule of close to 1,000 flights, restoring 90% of its pre-COVID-19 crisis route network. Since COVID-19-related flight restrictions began in mid-March, Ryanair has been operating a skeleton daily schedule of flights between Ireland, the UK and Europe. From July, the airline intends to restart flying from most of its 80 bases across Europe, with fewer daily/weekly frequencies on trunk routes as it works to restore some services on the widest number of routes rather than operating high frequency services on a small number.