GENERAL

“Putting the best out on the table is more important now than ever,” says Sanjeev Nanda

The Dubai-based restaurateur emphasizes the importance of maintaining good food quality for restaurant businesses

Everything was unicorn and rainbows for the hospitality sector – businesses were thriving, tourism was bustling, and the consumers has little to no qualms about their well-being. Then the pandemic struck and quite literally shook the entire sector to the core. As many businesses gasped for breath under strenuous circumstances, several were able to stay afloat and make a resounding comeback as the crisis subsided. The secret to their survival lied in the quality of their food.

At a time when procuring ingredients was nothing short of a herculean task, most restaurant businesses managed to maintain the safety, hygiene, and quality of the food their guests consumed. In the opinion of Dubai-based restaurateur Sanjeev Nanda, this is a remarkable feat on part of F&B businesses. The Miss Tess owner is also of the opinion that keeping the quality of food unaffected is more important now than ever, owing to the post-pandemic slowdown from which the industry is recovering.

“Consumers are still hesitant to a certain degree about whether it is safe to dine at restaurants again. Yes, all the Covid safety protocols are being adhered to, but the best way to make all those apprehensions go away is to serve good food,” says Sanjeev Nanda. According to him, when people venture out now, they are looking for an exceptional experience that does not compromise on either the safety or the taste. This makes them be more selective when it comes to selecting a restaurant to dine at.

Another major factor contributing to this change in consumer behavior is the lockdown effect. As people were shut in their homes for a prolonged duration, it also forced them to evaluate their eating habits. According to Sanjeev Nanda, it pushed them to give a thought about what goes on their plate – whether the ingredients are locally sourced, whether their quality is at par with the international standards, whether the poultry and dairy products are cruelty-free, and whether or not are the fruits and vegetables devoid of any harmful pesticide or fertilizer. This evolving thought process behind dining has further led consumers to take their dining experiences seriously, and choose the restaurants that fit these metrics in the best way possible. Responsible restaurants are catching up on the changing consumer preferences, and are constantly educating the guests about the sources of their dishes, along with ensuring that the items on the menu taste just as good as the quality of the ingredients. There is only one future for the business of food – good food!