A 2020 in deep red and a 2021 started with almost 4 months of nothing and that still leaves too much room for uncertainty to talk about a real recovery. The report Fipe, 19 on catering 2020 is, in the description of the same association, a real war bulletin, although now restaurants start again after a disastrous 2020. The data talking about more than 243.000 jobs lost between accommodation and catering facilities. Half of these people were hired indefinitely, and they were forced to quit because, with the blocking of redundancies by companies and a redundancy fund “that came slow or didn't come quite “, as the director of the Fipe study center Luciano Sbarga said, were forced to look for other ways or, least, to have the end-of-relationship treatment.
Lost €31 billion
And if in 2020 we all cooked more, much more, and food spending at home grew by 6 billion euros, the one in the bar, trattorias, restaurants, fell by EUR 31 billion and thus returned to 1994 levels, 26 years ago. In the annus horribilis of Covid 97,5% of companies recorded a decrease in turnover that, for over 6 out of 10 restaurateurs, exceeded 50% of turnover compared to 2019. The government's refreshments? Definitely insufficient for almost 90% of entrepreneurs.
The pandemic has profoundly changed the relationship between consumers and public: in July 2020 breakfast accounted for 28% of the occasions of consumption outside and in February 2021 it is at 33%. For dinners, instead, there was a drop from 19% to 11%. In fact, in February 2021 breakfasts, mid-morning lunches and breaks accounted for 87% of consumer opportunities, with the near disappearance of dinner out. A change that began with the long quarantine period last year, that has radically changed the consumption of Italians.
In short, fipe report photographs the worst data ever. Looking back there is still anger over emergency management that seems to have unfairly penalised the catering industry. But even looking to the future there is so much pessimism: the business confidence index for sector entrepreneurs in the first quarter of 2021 fell by 68%,3% and turnover is still expected to fall by at least 20%.
What does the Dl Reopening provide
Yet, a light at the end of the tunnel you can see: the Dl Riaperture approved on Monday 17 May by the Council of Ministers has drawn up a road map that provides for the reduction of the curfew by one hour from 19 May (that will start at 11 pm). From June 7, the curfew will start at 24 and from June 21, all, the curfew will be lifted. Just in time for summer holidays. From June 1st it will also be possible for restaurants and bars to welcome customers inside, in indoor spaces, obviously respecting the safety regulations established by the Government.
Is, if according to the Fipe report restaurants now start again after a disastrous 2020, the knot remains tourism: if there is no desired recovery in tourist flows, summer may not bring the economic relief you hoped for. Is, waiting for holidaymakers, on the red accounts of restaurants weighs smart working, that left the offices deserted and, with them, lunch breaks. In short, according to Fipe, the real restart for the sector will not arrive before 2022 and it will take about 5 years to return to pre-Covid levels”.