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Online Meet-ups

Online meet-up #3: how can businesses work together during and post COVID-19?

Last week we met up online, once again, to discuss some of the challenges the food and beverage industry is facing during and post COVID-19. The focus of the conversation was how businesses can work together in order to survive the crisis. Find out the highlights, as well as a full recording of the conversation below.

The guests

  • Adi Raihmann, Karma Food, Vienna
  • Maarten van der Jagt, Giraffe Coffee Roasters, Rotterdam
  • Gilles Reuter, Die Parfümerie, Vienna
  • Alex Ciomartan, Fix me a Drink, Bucharest
  • Alex Dumitru, Anika Restaurant, Bucharest

The highlights

13 ways in which food and beverage businesses can work together during COVID-19

  1. Work together with big partners or suppliers who are more financially stable during a crisis.
  2. Host Instagram live podcasts with people from the industry, or live cooking, coffee making and cocktail making classes.
  3. Start a slack channel where f&b businesses from the same country share information from banks, tax advisors and other governmental measures.
  4. Share a PR or marketing company that can help multiple businesses at the same time, through similar challenges.
  5. Share resources between businesses, for example, packaging or deliveries, to reduce the overall cost.
  6. Share any unneeded space with other initiatives who may need it. For example, Giraffe Coffee Roasters offered one of their spaces to a local initiative that brings local products together and packages them in a box.
  7. Set up online interviews and meet&greets with partners and suppliers.
  8. Organise daily cooking classes which keep the community engaged on a constant level.
  9. Create personal connections with your community. For example, Karma Food will be helping their community come up with dishes based on what they have available.
  10. Repurpose your business to support others, whether they are small food artisans or artists. For example, Artichoke Social House coffeeshop in Bucharest is going to turn into a shop during this time.
  11. Create an international network with similar businesses, especially when your business involves international deliveries, like coffee, for example. So, a coffee roaster from a country could send their beans to another roaster to support one another, share practices, identify trends and most importantly, start a broader conversation.
  12. Start a joint cookbook with multiple small businesses.
  13. Partner up with a postal service to broaden the reach of your products nationwide.

Other resources and ideas to help your f&b business during Covid-19

  • RoadXL.de is a great tool for inputting 20 different addresses and optimise your delivery route.
  • Repurpose any materials you may have available. At Fix Me A Drink, Alex reuses otherwise wasted bottles to package their cocktails.
  • We have just opened up our Slack channel where we will continue sharing thoughts, ideas and initiatives, as well as organise future meet-ups. If you are interested in joining us, reach out here.

Watch the full discussion here

Join us!

Are you the owner of a small food and beverage business? Join our future conversations, which happen weekly. Register your interest here.

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Online Meet-ups

Highlights from the #foodonourtables online meet-up #2

On the 2nd of April, a few of us met online, again, to tackle the most pressing issues caused by COVID-19 on the food and drinks industry. Discover what we talked about, and watch or listen to the recorded conversation.

Our attendees and agenda

Here you can find the handbook I had prepared for the meet-up.

Our attendees, in short:

We started the discussion with brief introductions, then brainstormed and listed the issues that the food and drinks industry faces during and post corona. After the brainstorming session, Florian Schuhmann-Irschik presented Drinking Against Sinking. The project aims to gather natural winemakers who, under the same label, support their distribution network and themselves during this period. Find out more about the project here.

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Watch or listen to our discussion

My goal is to make progress as transparent as possible. This is why I have recorded the session and will continue doing the same for our next ones.

Some of the highlights of the discussion, illustrated

Conclusions from the meet-up

We came up with over 25 different problems, then voted for the most pressing ones, which we will tackle, one at a time, during the next series of meet-ups. Here are the questions we will be working on:

  • How can businesses work together more, to support each other?
  • Cashflow is a challenge, which puts pressure on customers, as well as suppliers and partners. Who will be there, once this crisis passes? How can meaningful connections be built at this stage? How can business models change and offering change?
  • How can we create a new culture of spending money? How can we make consumers understand the importance of supporting local businesses right now, as well as immediately after the crisis?
  • How can we support mental health and resilience in the industry, especially since no one was prepared for this situation, and no one had contingency plans in place.
  • How can we influence local governments to make it easier for businesses to operate once the crisis is over by easing some of the restrictions that have existed in recent years?

Are you interested in joining us in our future meet-ups?

Would you like to participate in our future meet-ups? Register your interest here and I will be in touch.

Until then, stay safe!

Ioana

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Online Meet-ups

Join us on our quest to find creative solutions for the hospitality industry during and post COVID-19

I’ve already told you about our initial online meet-up in this blog update. And I’ve also told you that we’re not stopping there. My purpose? Simple: to gather a group of like-minded individuals, be it people from the hospitality industry or people who are passionate about business innovation, and collectively support each other with ideas and expertise during and post COVID-19.

Why global? Because I strongly believe that by thinking globally, we will be able to come up with better solutions. And learn from each other’s challenges and successes.

How can you join our online meet-ups?

Are you a restaurant owner? A chef? A coffee shop owner? A bar owner? A food blogger? A restaurant consultant? A baker? A farmer? A winemaker? A food trend researcher? A food photographer? Do you love this industry? Join us, and let’s be stronger together!

Sign up, and we’ll keep you in the loop. 💌 No spam, promised!

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Online Meet-ups

We had our first online meet-up to discuss the impact of COVID-19 on the hospitality industry

One thing is obvious, whether you are in Bucharest, Vienna, New York, or any city impacted by COVID-19, local hospitality businesses are struggling. On the 24th of March, a few of us had an online meet-up to discuss these matters and start thinking about solutions. Together.

Here are the highlights of our discussion

– Delivery doesn’t really work and it’s not a long-term solution. People need raw products more than cooked food. Plus, it can be risky.

– There is a lack of clarity around government policies and new measures. A recurrent theme of the call was the fact that nobody knows exactly what their government is doing or how to apply for relief.

– Given the uncertainty and daily changes in measures taken by local governments, it is hard to build a long-term plan.

– While vouchers are great, they are not enough to support local businesses.

– A lot of business owners cannot assume the responsibility of asking their staff to be working during this period.

– It is important to stay active and relevant and do good these days. On the platforms that are available to us, be it on social media, or on a video conference. This will help local businesses keep their communities engaged and show them that they care.

– A solution to keeping businesses afloat may be reinventing and repurposing them. This is not only to be able to keep some cashflow coming in, but also to support local communities.

– It is a time when big businesses that are flourishing (for example supermarkets) should make a difference and support local businesses and local communities.

– If businesses cannot do anything now, but will somehow manage to survive the crisis, what is it that they can do once this is over?

– Although unfortunate, maybe the death of some local businesses is something we all have to be ready for. And think about reopening when it’s time, again, be it in a year, two, three, or more.

– It would be helpful if accountants, lawyers and business consultants could provide some form of pro bono support for local businesses to help them during the crisis.

Here is a gallery of the most inspiring thoughts from the call

If you find any of them as inspiring as I did, save it/them on your device and share it/them on your social media.

What are the next steps and how can you get involved?

With Food on our Tables, my purpose is to create a small global community of entrepreneurs from the food sector and come up with creative solutions to tackle this crisis.

This was the first online meet-up, but we are not planning on stopping here. I will continue hosting these events and update you on the conversations we are having.

Here are a couple of things you can do to help:

– If you are passionate about the hospitality industry or work directly in it, and are interested in joining our conversations, get in touch and I will keep you updated with what’s happening next.

– If you know any accountants, lawyers or business consultants who would be willing to share their knowledge with local entrepreneurs, please reach out.

– If you like this initiative and believe in the power of thinking globally and acting locally, please share it further.

Stay safe,

Ioana