Go off the beaten track

Nearly 65,000 commercial food outlets, including bars, cafes and restaurants, have been forced to rotate in the past six weeks due to COVID-19 shutdowns ordered by the Australian government. Those that have remained open, or are beginning to reopen, offer their customers restaurant-quality food to take out, or have it delivered to their doorstep. As companies have completely transformed their business model overnight, customers are enjoying their favorite meals in a take-out format and the food delivery boom continues to intensify as new research shows food delivery. spends 213% above normal in the week of April 27 to May 4. .

With the dramatic transformation of businesses, choosing the right packaging has never been more essential for foodservice businesses. The packaging industry plays a vital role in providing food grade hygienic solutions to protect ready-to-eat foods.

One of Australia’s food packaging experts, Marinucci, is a leader in food packaging innovation and understands how important packaging is to a catering business. He is currently helping businesses with disrupted supply chains, as well as those that have turned to take-out and food delivery, to stay open.

With the heightened awareness of health and hygiene and the increase in ‘contactless’ home delivery, pickup and drive-thru services, customers will begin to prioritize the relative safety and security offered by good packaging. David Marinucci, CEO of Marinucci, explains: “Packaging plays an essential role in ensuring that food is properly protected during the journey from the kitchen to the consumer. Does the packaging have to be tamper-proof? Can the items be prepackaged for customers to come in and grab? How can a catering operator ensure food arrives safely to a customer? Once the food is at the customer’s home, should it be microwaved, reheated, frozen, or kept airtight? These are the types of questions a chef or cafe owner should answer when making their packaging decisions, as they can greatly affect food freshness and customer experience.

“Over the past few months, we’ve seen the restaurant industry shift to a take-out industry. Chefs and cafe owners need to think about packaging and how it can help their business and be part of their offering. It’s not just about protecting the freshness, temperature of food and minimizing food waste. It is also about providing packaging that is fit for purpose and that can be easily recycled, ”said Marinucci.

“We understand that the right packaging solution can be essential for the future of a restaurant business, so we help customers manage their cash flow by offering no minimum order value, a $ 10 delivery fee. in metropolitan areas and same day shipping for online orders. Like us, many of our customers are obsessed with food, so we know how important it is that as an industry we all help each other get through this, ”Marinucci said.

As lockdown restrictions begin to ease, the focus will be on assisting those heavily affected to resume their activities and function successfully again. A study released by the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) shows that 84% of accommodation and food services businesses expect their business to be affected in the next two months. For sites that reopen, the focus will be on the remediation processes, and packaging will play a role. An example of this is smaller sites, which do not have commercial dishwashers with disinfection options above 80 degrees to ensure hygiene, will rely on good quality eco-friendly packaging. environment.

“While this is an extremely difficult time for the restaurant industry, looking to the future after the COVID-19 crisis, I think we will see restaurants and cafes continue to offer delivery and pickup options. home. Consumers value the convenience and speed of delivery, and businesses with healthy, high-quality take-out food that can replicate the on-site dining experience will see additional opportunities for their business. Our job will be to continue to innovate and come up with solutions to protect the freshness of food, while supporting the chef and cafe owners, and of course, making it a wonderful experience for consumers, ”said Marinucci.

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