COVID 19 and the food service industry

The Réunion is aware of the devastation of the food service industry caused by the effects of COVID-19.  We are also aware of the detrimental effects this is having on so many of our members.

The activities of the Réunion are continuing, although events are not currently able to take place.  However, the programme of events continues to be planned so that Réunion is fully prepared when restrictions have been lifted.

One week is a long time in COVID-19.  Our understanding is changing and hopefully the risks will reduce.  New opportunities to manage the risks will appear and ensuring awareness of these opportunities will help to better meet the challenges of the future.  Below is information on subscriptions, members seeking support, and sources of official information.  The Secretary will also be providing regular updates to members based on current industry responses.

Subscriptions 2020 and 2021

Recognising the effects of COVID 19 on everyone, the committee decided not to charge a subscription for 2020.  If you have already paid a subscription for 2020, it will now be automatically shown as the subscription for 2021.  If you have not paid your subscription for 2020 you do not have to pay now as you will be invoiced for the 2021 subscription as normal in January 2021.

Members seeking personal support

If any member is seeking personal support because of effects of COVID 19, please visit the UK Government and professional association websites (links given below).  Hospitality Action also offers a range of support.  The website is at: https://www.hospitalityaction.org.uk.   If you are making an application for support from Hospitality Action, then please let the Honorary Almoner, Neville Watson, know so that the Réunion can support your application. Email: njwatson37@gmail.com.

Sources of information:

Keeping ahead of best practice guidance and changes in scientific understanding is essential. It is also important to only follow advice from authoritative sources.  Examples of these sources include:

World Health Organisation:
The organisation gives general information on world heath, and also provides detailed information on COVID 19. https://www.who.int 

UK Government:
General Coronavirus (COVID-19) related advice  https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus
Specific advice on business reopening https://www.gov.uk/coronavirus-business-reopening 
Health and Safety Executive – the UK’s national regulator for workplace health and safety provides detailed guidance on risk assessment and managing risks, and on working safely, restarting work, and being COVID-secure. https://www.hse.gov.uk

Professional associations:
UK Hospitality – the trade body for the UK hospitality industry provides up-to-date detailed advice which especially covers reopening guidance. https://www.ukhospitality.org.uk/
Institute of Hospitality – the professional international hospitality management association provides detailed information on navigating business instability caused by COVID-19. https://www.instituteofhospitality.org
CareerScope – a free service created by a range of industry associations to support those who have lost their jobs and want to get back into work, and also for those looking to start their career in hospitality, leisure and tourism. https://careerscope.uk.net
The Food Service Circle – a support network for food service and contract catering professionals. Founded by the leaders of the UK’s food service companies, their aim is to help everyone impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic by sharing ideas, insights, and job opportunities. This network will help develop your interview skills, give you access to the latest vacancies, and keep you in touch with what is happening in our sector. https://foodservicecircle.com/

Commercial organisations:
Magna Food Health and Safety provides food safety consultancy, training, on-line courses and support materials. https://www.magna-fhs.com
Cloud Break Safety have set up a COVID-secure website which includes free information and downloads. www.covidriskassessment.co.uk
Foodservice Consultants Society International (FCSI) is a professional association and provides a searchable international register of specialist foodservice consultants. https://www.fcsi.org