What the Coronavirus Pandemic Means for Restaurant Food Costs?

What the Coronavirus Pandemic Means for Restaurant Food Costs?

restaurant food costs

You may be curious about what the pandemic means for restaurant food costs. You may also have noticed that your restaurant or grocery bill is a little higher than usual. With the coronavirus pandemic spreading, it seems like the price of everything steadily rising.

Keeping calm in tough times is an important part of running a business. If meat prices are taking a toll on your wallet, there are steps you can take to reduce the impact of expensive food. One of the first things you do is to talk to a business consultant.

So, what exactly does the coronavirus pandemic mean for restaurant food costs?

What Can I Do?

If you are a part of restaurant management, you may find your business struggling for many different reasons. The pandemic forces potential customers to stay in-doors and food costs in your area might also be rising.

If you find yourself surrounded in problems you do not know how to fix, check-in with MBB Management for help. They can assist you with any problem and give you advice. If you need to find restaurant food cost solutions, MBB Management is the place to go.

Extra Covid-19 Charges

Pull out that receipt from the restaurant you got take-out from the other day. You may notice a Covid-19 surcharge. What is going on?

Meat prices are rising and causing restaurants to struggle. To fight the rising meat prices, many are opting for a Covid-19 surcharge. This has angered many customers.

The cost of meat rose 8.1% at the end of April– unfortunately it could go up 20% more, according to experts. After receiving backlash for the extra Covid-19 charges, many restaurants removed the fee and instead rose the food costs of their entire menu.

Kiko’s Japanese Steakhouse and Sushi Lounge was one of these restaurants.

The Receipt that Went Viral

A receipt from Kiko’s was posted on Twitter, sending many people into an outrage. The image pointed out a Covid-19 charge which caused the tweet to go viral. Kiko’s responded that they did not want to take advantage of their customers- but needed the 5% charge to stay in business.

After Kiko’s employees were harassed offline, the restaurant opted to remove the extra charge but raise their food costs instead. They had only intended to fight the inflation of meat costs, but restaurant management was abused over it.

Kiko’s is not the only restaurant facing this issue. If your business needs assistance with food cost solutions, MBB Management would be happy to talk with you.

Why Are Food Costs Rising?

Many meat plants were temporarily shut down due to the coronavirus pandemic. This caused a supply and demand issue, raising the price of many meat, fish, and poultry products.

You might have noticed that meat costs more at grocery stores as well- many Americans are being affected by this. Coronavirus has interrupted the food supply chain, causing the costs to rise at an alarming rate.

How Are Restaurants Affected?

Meats, fish, and poultry are going to be more expensive until more meat plants are reopened. The price of eggs, an ingredient in many dishes, also is rising steadily as people panic-buy.

However, with many areas in lock-down, you will not be seeing many customers coming into your store. Online ordering and take-out are better ways to make sales right now. With fewer customers, you may find you can order slightly fewer ingredients during this time.

With food costs rising, you may have had to make changes to your menu pricing. Talking to a restaurant management consultant can help you prepare for what steps you need to take next.

What Food is the Most Affected?

Beef. On May 4th, ground beef cost $2.40 a pound- May 11th it rose to $5.50 a pound, with the price still rising. The cost of ground beef has more than doubled, causing some restaurants to temporarily close due to the cost.

Millions of pounds of meat disappeared from the food supply chain. Even as more plants reopen, a massive amount of beef is still missing from the chain. This is causing restaurants using beef to raise their prices and making it cost more from supermarkets.

Restaurants are Buying More

When restaurant management stumbles across meat at a lower than average price, they tend to buy more of it than they need. This saves them money, with the cost of meat being so high lately. However, this means that others are having trouble finding affordable food.

Why Did my Favorite Menu Item Disappear?

Due to current restaurant food costs, some items are having to be cut entirely to keep the menu price down. In other cases, the ingredients to make that menu item just are not available anywhere.

If you are in restaurant management, choosing to cut a popular item from the menu can be difficult. However, customers will understand if having that item would eventually cause you to close down. Sometimes, tough decisions need to be made.


So, if you noticed a Covid-19 surcharge or that it costs way more for you to order ground beef than it ever did before, that is why. Meat plants are closing due to the coronavirus pandemic, causing a shortage of meat.

With this shortage comes an expensive price tag on your meats, forcing many restaurants to raise their prices. This is why food costs are shooting up so drastically- and not just in the restaurant business. Many grocery stores and supermarkets are raising their prices too.

Even when meat plants reopen, it will take a little while for the supply chain to recover. In the meantime, you can edit your menu to help ease the burden.

If you find yourself on hard times and need help to keep your restaurant running, MBB Management is eager to provide you with quality assistance. They can give you advice and let you know what steps are necessary to take, especially with providing you with food cost solutions.

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