Novel coronavirus stockpiling takes a cold turn
Novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is hitting the London restaurant industry hard: Chinatown restaurants report continual downturn; the London Coffee Festival has been postponed; U.K. Hospitality has called on the government to relax business rates in the event of a coronavirus lockdown, similar to the measures imposed in Italy.
That situation — and the advice to self-isolate if symptoms appear — is what’s driving another key facet of response to the virus: lots of people buying lots of food in supermarkets. Frozen food purveyor Iceland has reported a surge in sales, according to the Guardian, with founder Malcolm Walker saying “Frozen food is the perfect way to stockpile ... We have no shortage of stock.” Meanwhile, retailers John Lewis and AO.com are also seeing a run on freezers. Elsewhere, Richard Harrow, chief executive of British Frozen Food Federation said it was “too early” to say if there would be shortages but that the sector was well placed to cope with demand. He did however warn that home storage may present some fundamental complications: “It’s not like dried pasta or toilet roll which you can put in a cupboard,” he said, “with frozen food you have to put it somewhere cold.”
And in other news...
- Wild garlic season 2020 follows a winter that wasn’t a winter at all, a harbinger of spring that reveals how seasonality is being rewritten by the climate emergency. Still, green food all over Instagram!
- From The Strategist: the best home coffee makers for the morning cup.
- Coronavirus fears continue to hit Chinatown restaurants hardest.
- Red Dog barbecue restaurant will reopen in Soho with an Austin-style menu. [Hot Dinners]
- Good tweet:
crazy how you don't learn about shallots until your late 20s— fran hoepfner (@franhoepfner) March 8, 2020