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Hospitality News Roundup – W/c 13/2

Hospitality NewsMonday 13/2/17 – 2017 drinks trends: what to stock

By Nicholas Robinson+, 13-Feb-2017

Gin will give way to Tequila and more consumers will seek to buy only locally-made alcoholic drinks, including craft beer and spirits.

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Tuesday 14/2/17 – Amazon deal highlights business rates inequality: The ALMR has repeated its call for business rates equality for pubs following the news that Amazon is set to receive a business rates cut. ALMR Chief Executive Kate Nicholls said: “Pubs, bars and restaurants are crucial employers and drivers of growth for the UK economy, yet they still face extortionate business rates. These bills are increasing in every region of the UK and many businesses will struggle to absorb the costs. Last week The Sun reported that over 17,000 pubs are looking at an average 19% increase in their bills. “Investment and jobs are at risk if the Government does not act quickly to tackle this problem. The current system is unfair and so complex for high street retailers that it risks scaring away investment from overseas. “The Government has reportedly seen fit to lower Amazon’s business rates bill but numerous small businesses across the country, businesses that contribute to both the economic and social fabric of our high streets, are to get no such help. Pubs and restaurants pay over a third of turnover in taxes whereas Amazon paid just £11.9million in tax in 2015 despite £5.3billion in sales. “The Government must act to reform business rates and provide transitional relief for valuable, hardworking pubs and bars that contribute so much and will be hugely missed should they be priced out of business.” – Three quarters of customers will pay more for a quality cocktail

By Nikkie Sutton, 14-Feb-2017

More than 75% of customers are happy to pay for a better quality cocktail according to bar group Be At One. Read More – 7 things you need to know about the apprenticeship levy

By Liam Coleman, 14-Feb-2017

With less than two months until the apprenticeship levy takes effect, here are seven things you need to know to prepare yourself for the big day. Read More

Wednesday 15/2/17

Thursday 16/2/17 – Bidvest Foodservice rebrands as Bidfood: Bidvest Foodservice has announced that it will be trading under the new name of Bidfood from April 3rd. The change follows the separation of the global Bidvest Foodservice businesses from the Bidvest Group, when it listed independently on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange in May last year. Chief executive Andrew Selley, said: “It’s no secret that as our business has evolved over the years, so too has our name. “When we made the move from Bidvest 3663 to Bidvest Foodservice, we also launched a new mission, vision and employee values, all centring on service excellence and offering the best customer experience in the market. “Although our name is changing, these principles and our wider business priorities remain firmly in our focus, and I believe this is a stronger brand for us and for our Bidfood businesses globally. “We’re passionate about delivering service excellence, making life easier for customers and helping them to grow, and over the last 18 months we’ve been focused on making important internal changes to meet customer needs now and in the future. “We are fully committed to investing in our local depots, our teams and our services and delivering great food, the best choice in the market and innovative and exciting ranges to achieve this.” The new name and logo will be introduced during the transition period from April. – Business rates contribute to one in five pub closures, claims exclusive BBC research

By Daniel Woolfson, 16-Feb-2017

High business rates have contributed to one in five pub closures in England and Wales over the past six years, an exclusive BBC Radio 4 investigation has claimed. Read More – Pub employers ‘named and shamed’ for dodging national living wage

By Daniel Woolfson, 16-Feb-2017

Several pubs have been named and shamed for underpaying their staff the national minimum or living wage. Read More – Plans lodged for mixed-use development in Lincoln: Plans have been submitted to bulldoze a shopping park in Lincoln and replace it with a development comprising restaurants, bars, shops, homes, student accommodation and a hotel. St Marks would consist of a shopping centre and retail park divided by the River Witham. The site earmarked for development by Standard Life Investments would comprise 34 retail units. Under the proposals, which have been submitted to City of Lincoln Council, a number of buildings would be demolished to make way for almost 355,000 square feet of retail space, 82,500 square feet of space for restaurants and bars, and up to 150 homes. A maximum of 1,100 student accommodation units could be developed at the site, as well as a 130-bedroom hotel and a multi-storey car park with 1,100 spaces. Provision has also been made for a potential cinema. The existing retail park on the west of the St Marks site is home to companies including Toys R Us, Pizza Hut, Topps Tiles and Homebase, while the shopping centre to the east is occupied by Mamas & Papas, Mitchells & Butlers’ Toby Carvery, Multiyork and Pure Gym. Most of the existing units in St Marks Shopping Centre will be retained, including the shop behind the listed facade of the former station and the units leading from Debenhams to the high street. A planning statement said: “The application proposes a new, high-quality development to complement the existing city centre provision.”

Friday 17/2/17 – Spending in restaurants at a five-year high

By Hannah Thompson, 16-Feb-2017

Spending on eating out in restaurants and cafes, and staying in hotels, is at a five-year high. Read More – Illegal football: ten pubs slapped with huge fines in major clampdown

By Liam Coleman, 17-Feb-2017

Licensees from across the UK have been issued with fines totalling £92,700 following a significant attempt from the Premier League to stamp out illegal football in pubs. Read More – Pub food can survive the Brexit storm

By Nicholas Robinson+, 17-Feb-2017

Food-led pubs are in the best position to weather the storm of Brexit-induced price rises and reduced consumer confidence caused by political instability. Read More – Director disqualified for six years for employing illegal workers: Saiful Alam, director of Indian restaurant the Prince of Bengal on Langley Way in Watford, has been disqualified for six years for employing illegal workers. Home Office Immigration Enforcement officials inspected the premises of Nuha Limited, which trades as the Prince of Bengal, in December 2014, and imposed a penalty of £30,000 after they found two illegal workers. Payment of the penalty was due by 21 April 2015, however Alam’s company went into liquidation in March 2015, and so the penalty remained unpaid. At the time of liquidation, the company had a recorded deficiency in excess of £139,000, including the £30,000 penalty. Read More

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