Connections

Confronting Hospitality Conditions During COVID-19
by Jim Lopolito 
Food Fair Contributing Business Editor
 
Jim is providing free consulting sessions in April 2020 focusing on COVID-19. 
In this article as well as in his free consult, Jim Lopolito, a veteran in the industry  who has administered multi-million dollar budgets for restaurants,  applies his expertise for managing in what are arguably the most difficult times for the foodservice industry in all categories. 
We think without a doubt that Jim is worth a few minutes of your time.
 
The damaging impact of COVID-19 upon the food industry is here and the aftermath may be a long road of corrections. There could be an upside with the replenishment of fish in our seas and better air quality, but joblessness and business closures are far from a good story. We will also have to expect wasted foods from farms and fisheries, and the decline in food available causing rising prices.
Read full article on this site and reach out to Jim for the free consult. He would like to hear from you and odds are, you will be glad you did. 
Read the story.on this site. 
 
No App Needed Launches Order/Pickup Platform, Saving Restaurants from Unaffordable Commission Fees during the
COVID-19 Emergency
San Francisco company delivers easy contact-free order-payment-pickup system — helping restaurants keep their profits without diners having to download yet another app.
SAN FRANCISCO, April 14, 2020  -- No App Needed announced today the launch of the No App Needed platform. Without downloading an app or creating an account, diners can order using any device to enter contact-free orders, payment information, and schedule food pickup. Meanwhile, restaurants can keep their profits and avoid the steep commissions charged by food ordering platforms. The company is offering its platform free of subscription fees during the COVID-19 emergency until September 30th.
With the number of COVID-19 cases in the U.S. continuing to grow, many state and city officials have ordered the closure of all onsite-dining at restaurants and bars. No App Needed Founder Oliver Clarke said, "We originally came up with this idea to help our friends' restaurant keep more of their profits. We're launching now during the COVID-19 emergency so that other restaurants can leverage contact-free pickup and sales. That way they can keep their employees and customers safe, while continuing to stay open and meet their communities' needs."
The system is already deployed at restaurants like Ranch PDX pizza locations in Portland, Oregon. Ranch PDX owners Richard Corey and Eric Wood commented, "Customers immediately started creating orders as soon as the order link went live on our website. It's been a godsend since switching to take-out only at our restaurants due to COVID-19. We have already saved thousands of dollars in delivery app fees." To see the system in action and order at Ranch PDX, click here.
"Diners have learned how to order ahead for pickups at large quick-service restaurants, but before No App Needed, there hasn't been a cost-effective solution for smaller sized restaurants. Now restaurants of any size can integrate No App Needed into their website and give their customers a simple order-pay-pickup experience," said TJ Keating, Commercial Director of No App Needed.
About No App Needed: No App Needed helps restaurants keep their profits without diners having to download yet another app onto their device. No App Needed supports payments through Apple Pay and Google Pay using both the Square and Stripe payment systems.  Learn more at noappneeded.com.
San Francisco is capping the commission delivery companies can take after some restaurants accuse DoorDash, UberEats, and others of taking up to 30% of their revenue while they’re already struggling.
San Francisco is limiting how much third-party delivery platforms can charge local restaurants during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The office of Mayor London Breed announced Friday that...
read full story on 
BusinessInsider.com
 
 
 
Giving Back
Noodles & Company Launches New Family Meals; Gives Back To Healthcare Workers
 
Company to donate one regular entree to healthcare workers for every Noodles Family Meal purchased

 
BROOMFIELD, Colo., April 8, 2020 
Noodles & Company (NASDAQ:NDLS),
 
known for serving classic noodle, Zoodle and Caulifloodle dishes from around the world, announced new Noodles Family Meals for a cause, available nationwide beginning today. Family meals are only available online and guests can choose quick pick-up at any location or the added convenience of new curbside pick-up at nearly 350 locations nationwide. Additionally, guests can also enjoy free delivery through April 30 when ordering directly from Noodles.com or the Noodles app*.
 
While Noodles Family Meals provide a convenient and enjoyable break in the day for guests, Noodles & Company also wants to give back to those dedicating their time to others during this difficult period. For every family meal purchased, Noodles will donate a regular-sized bowl back to healthcare workers**.
"Staying at home doesn't mean we can't connect with others; in fact, maintaining a strong human connection is more important than ever in these unprecedented times, and while we've always been about noodles, right now, we're about company. The importance of shared connections with our guests, team members, and the communities we serve – even virtually – is what comes first," said Stacey Pool, chief marketing officer of Noodles & Company.
Noodles & Company has always stood for bringing people together and there is no better way to focus on company, no matter how far the distance, than over a warm, delicious bowl of noodles. Developing real, human connections is made easy with Noodles, which is why the brand is inviting guests to pull up a chair around the table, put on a smile, and connect with one another, even if it's on a laptop, over the phone, or across a balcony. Putting company first means taking care of each other like never before and it can start with just one bowl of Noodles.
The new Noodles Family Meal option allows guests to cultivate connection, company and comfort. Family meals are $40 and will serve four people for less than if ordered individually. Guests can choose from one of the following options: Italian Classics, Mac Pack, Asian Bowls, and World Flavors. Each family meal also comes with two sides, ensuring there is plenty to eat for every member of the family, with some left over for lunch the next day. Family meals are available for orders placed via Noodles.com or with the Noodles Rewards app.
Noodles understands families are seeking value and convenience right now, so it's a good time for guests to sign up for the Noodles Rewards program at noodles.com/rewards to benefit from Rewards points and offers from Noodles. New users who sign up for Noodles Rewards today through April 30 will receive an additional 1,500 bonus rewards points, which is enough points for a free regular entrée.
To learn more about family meals, please visit noodles.com/familymeals.
*Free delivery and curbside pick-up available at company-owned and select franchise locations.
**Available only at company-owned locations.
About Noodles & Company
Since 1995, Noodles & Company has been serving noodles your way, with noodles and flavors that you know and love as well as new ones you're about to discover. From indulgent Wisconsin Mac & Cheese to better-for-you Zoodles and Other Noodles, the company serves a world of flavor in every bowl. Made up of more than 450 restaurants and thousands of passionate team members, Noodles was named one of the Best Places to Work by the Denver Business Journal for its unique culture built on the value of "Loving Life," which begins by nourishing and inspiring every team member and guest who walks through the door. To learn more or find the location nearest you, visit www.noodles.com.
 
 
 
 
COVID-19 has Disrupted the Global Food-Supply Chain and this New Member-Based Platform Gro-connect.com Helps Directly Link Farmers With Buyers

 
SALEM, Ore., April 2, 2020 
Gro-connect.com (https://gro-connect.com/) formally announces the launch of its global food-supply chain networking platform. Gro-connect.com connects farmers with buyers, allowing users to trade and engage in sales transactions through direct communication across the platform. The platform serves as a neutral and safe hosting destination where food-supply chain users create custom profiles to connect with other users looking to buy or sell nationally and globally. Gro-connect.com is signing on new members now, and is currently waiving the yearly membership fee until the COVID-19 global pandemic clears.
 
"We created Gro-connect.com to help farmers expand their sales far beyond their usual local connections," said Lee Seward. "Global food service Market is huge, representing around $3.4 trillion value Globally in 2018 alone – and estimated to reach $4.2 trillion by 2024, that's a huge business, with a lot of companies who need to connect with each other, especially with the COVID-19 disruption. So, we've created an innovative platform that allows farmers and the buyers to easily connect directly. Farmers now have more hands-on control over the selling of their goods, while Buyers have direct access to Farmers and Growers needed for their supply chains anywhere. This ultimately creates more sales income for the Buyers and Farmers, while helping small business grow their brand pivoting both Nationally and Globally from this one platform. Gro-connect.com allows Farmers and Buyers to maximize income by removing boundaries and expanding reach."
Gro-connect.com: Direct Connections
Gro-connect.com is offered to farmers and buyers around the world with yearly membership fee and unlimited connections. With this streamlined connection, users can cut out wasted time spent searching for new contacts and cold-calling to inquire about services or goods. Members create profiles to promote themselves and their products. Each profile allows for photo and data uploads, website and social media links, private messages, and a rating system that enables members to evaluate the interaction of other users. Buyers can find exactly what they are searching for, while Farmers have a ready market of Buyers available at their fingertips. All buyers and sellers are clearly sorted and labeled and the site is easy to use from a phone or tablet.
Gro-connect.com: Reviews
"I like your site and the ease of use to connect with Buyers." –Darrin C.
"I would love to be partnered with your company as you expand into my country!" –Klaus M.
"Your company sounds awesome – we wish you success!" –Local farm bureau.
Gro-connect.com is working to widen its platform functionality with one-click features that promote ease and speed of commerce, while quickly expanding into other countries to represent an ever-increasing diverse community of farmers and buyers.  
About Gro-Connect.com
Gro-connect.com is a membership-based, dedicated digital connection platform for farmers and buyers. Gro-connect.com allows users to communicate directly without the hassle of cold calls or tedious searches. The site is simple to navigate and the personalized customization by users promotes branding and sales, while creating a thriving and vibrant marketplace. Learn how Gro-connect.com can help your products reach more Buyers or Sellers quickly and efficiently at: www.Gro-Connect.com.
 
 
 
When it comes to sanitation, not all gloves are the same.
 
Glove Specialist Eagle Protect Advises Individuals & Companies Using Gloves in Prevention of COVID-19 Transmission
SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif., April 16, 2020
Specialist global glove supply company, Eagle Protect, known for its advanced technical approach to food safety and glove research in the prevention of glove related cross-contamination, advises that glove management must be considered by food companies to prevent viral and bacterial transmission. 
Until now little importance has been placed on glove management - correct glove type, selection and use, including dispensing, glove change frequency and disposal. However, the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the need for excellent hand hygiene and improved food handling procedures - this includes using quality gloves to provide durability and the necessary barrier protection against pathogen contamination.
The most commonly used gloves for food handling, vinyl gloves, have been described by leading health experts as "infection control nightmares". Vinyl gloves are more prone to cross-contamination events than others due to inherent poor fit, high puncture frequency and permeation, and surface physico-chemical characteristicsAccumulating scientific evidence implicates vinyl (PVC) disposable gloves as responsible for the majority of glove related cross-contamination events in food handling, when compared to nitrile gloves.
Steve Ardagh, CEO of Eagle Protect, commented, "Gloves are usually viewed generically as just "gloves". In fact they are a critical Zone One food safety item. Food safety systems are ineffective with one weak link in the chain, and in many cases this is disposable gloves. Evidence is now irrefutable - viruses and other pathogens can pass through some gloves quickly and easily because of flaws in their structure. Currently the demand for protective gloves and clothing far exceeds supply, so companies must buy what they can, however when supply levels return, food operators must make intelligent gloves choices."
The CDC has noted poor compliance with hand hygiene programs in healthcare and food industries. With no paid sick leave in many US businesses, employees come to work sick, posing a risk of infecting others. 
The pandemic is forcing companies to incorporate additional health and safety procedures into business plans and food safety programs, into which disposable glove type, quality and management must be included. Procurement usually fails to consider glove durability factors when considering overall glove costs, and the economic, health and food safety consequences of purchasing cheap vinyl gloves can be a significant business risk, and more importantly a potential risk to public health.
For more information, contact: 
Lynda Ronaldson
VP Marketing
lynda@eagleprotect.com
Expo Global/Seafood Processing Global 2020 Edition Canceled
Portland, ME, USA – 16 April 2020
Diversified Communications, organizer of Seafood Expo Global/Seafood Processing Global, the world’s largest seafood event, has reluctantly determined that the continued and expanding magnitude of the public health and safety issues caused by COVID-19 worldwide now requires the cancellation of the 2020 edition of Seafood Expo Global/Seafood Processing Global.  The event had previously been postponed due to COVID-19.
Seafood Expo Global/Seafood Processing Global was originally scheduled for 21-23 April 2020 at the Brussels Expo in Belgium. “When we announced the postponement of the 2020 event, we hoped to reschedule to later this year,” said Liz Plizga, Group Vice President, Diversified Communications.
Given the recent announcement that the limitation on large gatherings in Brussels has been extended through 31 August 2020 and the ongoing impacts of COVID–19, including global travel restrictions, and the broad need to practice physical distancing, Diversified Communications has concluded it is impossible to hold the event.  The complexities of organizing a safe, global, seafood event drawing seafood professionals from more than 158 countries in the midst of a pandemic pose too many insurmountable hurdles. “We are disappointed to concede that hosting a 2020 edition of the event is infeasible,” added Plizga.
In the coming weeks, the Seafood Expo Global team will continue to reach out to exhibitors regarding the 2021 edition and will answer questions around the cancellation of the 2020 edition.
“While we all continue to navigate this difficult situation, the Seafood Expo Global/Seafood Processing Global team is engaged in intensive planning for the next edition, scheduled for 27-29 April 2021, in our beautiful new location, Fira Barcelona Gran Via, in Barcelona, Spain,” commented Plizga.
About Seafood Expo Global and Seafood Processing Global
Seafood Expo Global and Seafood Processing Global form the world’s largest seafood trade event.  Thousands of buyers and suppliers from around the world attend the annual, three-day exposition to meet, network and conduct business.  Attending buyers represent importers, exporters, wholesalers, restaurants, supermarkets, hotels, and other retail and foodservice companies.  Exhibiting suppliers offer the newest seafood products, processing and packaging equipment, and services available in the seafood market.  SeafoodSource.com is the exposition’s official media.  The exposition is produced by Diversified Communications, the international leader in seafood-industry expositions and media.  www.seafoodexpo.com/global
About Diversified Communications
iversified Communications is a leading international media company with a portfolio of face-to-face exhibitions and conferences, online communities and digital and print publications. As producers of these market-leading products Diversified Communications connects, educates and strengthens business communities in over 15 industries including: food and beverage, healthcare, natural and organic, business management and technology. The company’s global seafood portfolio of expositions and media includes Seafood Expo North America/Seafood Processing North America, Seafood Expo Global/Seafood Processing Global, Seafood Expo Asia and SeafoodSource.com. Established in 1949 and headquartered in Portland, Maine, USA with divisions and offices around the world, Diversified Communications remains a privately held, third generation, family-owned business. For more information, visit: www.divcom.com
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