Filip Fontaine, managing director of Belgian food marketing body Vlam, believes it will be harder for the traditional restaurant business to continue in its previous form after lockdown measures against coronavirus have been lifted.
“We expect that maybe more than 10 per cent of these restaurants will never open again, but when they do I think they will be changed a lot," he says in the latest episode of Fruitnet's podcast interview series Fruitbox.
"For example, in fruit and veg we have in our restaurants a high percentage of exotics, I think that is something that is really going to change. When we shift back to the new normal, we are quite sure that fruit and vegetables in the restaurants will shift to more local and less exotic.”
In the interview, Fontaine discusses the future of food and the major impact the recent coronavirus crisis has had, noting in particular a blurring of previous food channels that could mean foodservice and retail operators compete more for a share of the home dining market in future.
“You will not only buy your apples, pears and bananas at the retailer, there will be a foodservice and takeaway element. People will go there to buy processed fruit and vegetables," he predicts. "It was already there in most of the retailers, but this is a trend that we will see more and more."
Hosted by Chris White in London, Fruitbox now attracts a big audience across the global fruit and vegetable business that tunes in twice a week to hear exclusive interviews and expert analysis.
Produced by Fruitnet Media International, the show is essential listening for everyone in the fresh produce industry.
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