The Malta Independent 6 October 2022, Thursday
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New Covid measures huge blow to catering industry – ACE

Thursday, 20 January 2022, 13:54 Last update: about 10 months ago

The COVID measures that came into force on 17 January 2022 are yet again another blow to the catering industry, the Association of Catering Establishment said. Once again the Ministry for Health has shown that it is detached from reality and yet again is playing Russian roulette with the livelihood of restaurateurs.

The new measures further compounded the difficult situation with regard to human resources and  many staff are leaving the industry once again since one does not need to be vaccinated in other industries. The Catering Industry has already been facing staffing problems due to measures taken earlier.

In a survey conducted by ACE, more than one third of restaurants have one or more frontliner staff who are not vaccinated. These persons may work in other industries without problems but not in the catering industry.

In a survey run by ACE, 50% of the respondents stated that they  have no option but to reduce operations. Around 36% of respondents stated that they wanted to run their business as usual while 14% of them are closing their operations pending change in measures. It must be noted that the industry already lost 19 percent of its operators since the start of the pandemic.

It must also be noted that the industry is also suffering from a blatant abuse of the new quarantine rules. The ACE recommends that the quarantine period is of 5 days for everyone and that it is deductible from vacation leave.

The Government App does not seem to function properly with certain devices and consequently there are a lot of complaints from customers increasing the administrative burden to catering establishments .

Furthermore, functions are being cancelled in view of a minority of persons not being vaccinated, ACE said.

 

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