ocean basket
Photo: Ocean Basket
  • As restaurants wait for government to give them a date (and rules) to re-open, eateries like Ocean Basket have already put in place new measures to fight the spread of Covid-19. 
  • This includes disposable paper menus and a ban on waiters pouring drinks. 
  • Patrons can also expect temperature checks.  
  • For more stories go to www.BusinessInsider.co.za

Restaurants are on tenterhooks as they wait for the go-ahead to open for sit-down meals after President Cyril Ramaphosa last week indicated that it could happen soon under an "advanced" Level 3.

“We’ll go crazy and poor if we give it more time. The fact that they are not saying when is killing us. We are ready, all of us are ready. If they say open today, we can open tomorrow,” said CEO of Ocean Basket Grace Harding.

While government will still issue new regulations about what rules restaurants need to follow - and whether they will be able to sell alcohol to patrons - Ocean Basket has already readied its own approach. 

Inside Ocean Basket restaurants, customers will sit 1.5 metres away from each other, and temperature checks, hand washing and sanitising facilities will be available in restaurants.

Ocean Basket customers can also expect to pour their own drinks from cans or other sealed bottled containers. This is to ensure that waiters do not lean over customers and their food, says Harding.

Disposable paper menus and online menus will replace reusable ones at Ocean Basket. This is to ensure that customers limit contact with restaurant equipment as much as possible and are protected from germs.  

Pierre van Tonder, CEO of Spur Corporation, which also owns RocoMamas and Panarottis, said the group is pleased with Ramaphosa's announcement “as the coronavirus pandemic has had a catastrophic impact on our franchisees and the industry as a whole,” said Van Tonder.

“The minimal operations which began in May for deliveries, followed by takeaways in June, allowed a fraction of our franchisees to start earning some kind of revenue. This, of course, is nothing compared to our core business of serving customers sitting down. We’re looking forward to picking up the pieces with our franchisees in welcoming patrons to our restaurants and serving them great meals.”

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