The pandemic-caused lockdowns have caused many businesses to incur heavy losses. Independent restaurants have taken a particularly massive hit, as they can neither rely on corporate-backed safety measures nor on chains across the country with delivery services.
As per a report released by the Independent Restaurant Coalition, at least 85 percent of the independent restaurants will be permanently shut down by the end of 2020. The research was conducted in collaboration with Compass Lexexon, a global economic consulting company. The report dives into the difficulties faced by independent restaurants during these times of social distancing.
Independent restaurants alone make up for 70 percent of restaurants across the United States. These non-corporate restaurants rely exclusively on dine-in services for their profits. And without corporate-backed resources, these restaurants do not stand a chance to ride out the COVID-19 storm.
In a press call by IRC, Atomic Ramen owner Dan Wu said that the people who will be most affected by the government lockdowns are already marginalized individuals. They include businesses run by immigrants, women, and non-white people. He added that people with no monetary backups will have a hard time surviving the lockdowns.
Dirt Candy owner Amanda Cohen stated that even though her restaurant is closed for dine-in services, she still has to pay her rent, gas, and electricity bills.
Independent Restaurants Running At A Loss Even With Delivery
Many independent business owners said that the Paycheck Protection Program only offered temporary relief and failed to address the long-term issues. Bywater American Bistro owner Nina Compton stated that the PPP support is not sufficient to make the independent restaurants last even till December.
Unfortunately, there is no end in sight to the pandemic-related strict restrictions, at least until scientists find an antidote to the virus.
Many food catering businesses have turned to delivery to break out of this slump. However, an Eater survey discovered that 87 percent of business owners in San Francisco have reported that takeout and delivery was not enough to survive. And 60 percent of the owners said that they are not earning any profit and barely meeting their revenue cap.