How Covid-19 Changed the Catering Industry

Chef cleaning with sanitiser

How Covid-19 Changed the Catering Industry

Covid-19 affected the world in ways never thought possible. Families were ordered to refrain from seeing one another, and the government advised many businesses to work remotely or adapt to working with restrictions such as regular testing and social distancing. 


For some, work ended completely, and many were left without work for months, such as those in the catering industry. 


The following blog outlines the impact Covid-19 had on the industry and how it returned following months of strict restrictions.

Impact of Lockdowns on Businesses Relying on Foot Traffic & Offices

During the Covid-19 pandemic, there wasn’t a single industry that was unaffected to some extent. Many offices and shared working spaces, places that are perfect for corporate caterers to generate business, were closed for months. 

The pandemic also forced companies to adapt their way of working, leading to increased flexibility in working from home. As a result, no events such as corporate lunches were taking place; hence no catering was needed.

Fall in Consumer Spending

Consumers in the food industry spent less than they usually would over the Covid-19 period due to concerns about the virus being transmitted through shared food and enclosed eating spaces. 


Individuals were discouraged from eating in close proximity to one another and were strongly advised against sharing food. 

As a result of this, people were bringing their own food to events that required an in-person meeting, disregarding the need to purchase food from vendors.


The fear of catching the virus through sharing food also lead to consumers spending less money with catering companies due to fear of waste. As consumers believed that catering would not be eaten if ordered, wanting to avoid food wastage, they chose to not spend money.

Increase in Food Ordering Services

The Covid-19 pandemic has also led to an increase in food ordering services, with improved efficiency to generate more business. Businesses such as Deliveroo, Just Eat, and Uber Eats adapted and became more flexible due to a spike in popularity as consumers were no longer eating in restaurants.

Other fresh food providers also saw an increase in sales due to the closure of restaurants and the ongoing dread of visiting a supermarket to complete a weekly shop.

Boxed meal ingredients are becoming a more attractive option for easy meal prep without households needing to leave the house. Consumers can customise these boxes to suit single-occupant households through to whole families.

Increased Health and Safety

As events begin to recommence and the requirement for catering returns, many are becoming more conscious about health and safety precautions. In-depth research into trustworthy company caterers is becoming increasingly common among corporations. 


Cleanliness and hygiene are extremely important within a corporate catering company, regardless of Covid-19. The outbreak of the virus and its continued effects on the catering industry have forced companies to review their hygiene processes and have boosted the quality of these businesses over the last few years.

Many are often conscious of the spaces they are choosing to consume their food and will opt to remain socially distanced regardless of social distancing precautions. This adds to the pressure of hosting corporate events, with companies needing to find larger spaces to host in.

Decrease in Supply Chains Income

Due to a fall in consumer spending, core suppliers are subsequently seeing a decrease in income due to a fall in caterers’ income. 


There is a ripple effect on supply chains as a result of the lack of events requiring catering. As catering companies are losing business due to the pandemic, supply chains are seeing a decrease in purchases from these companies. 

What the landscape looks like now

Many businesses affected by the Covid-19 pandemic are yet to recover from the devastating losses they have suffered. 

Though some have seen a steady increase in their business returning following the lifting of restrictions, others have suffered losses too significant to come back from. Many small local companies lost most of their financial support and had to pool their resources to keep business afloat. 

The reintroduction of events and catering into occasions and gatherings has given businesses with enough remaining resources the opportunity to recoup their losses and continue their successes into the future.

Healthy and COVID-Secure Catering Options From Green Bike Food Co.

If you are looking to host a corporate event after the pandemic or are sourcing a professional, sustainable and COVID-secure catering company in Reading, get in touch with Green Bike Food Co. We are experienced in delivering a wide range of catering options tailored to your specific taste preferences.

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you continue using the site, you accept our privacy policy.
Accept Learn more