The Sushiholic

Smart Choice Restaurant & Food Lovers

Restaurant Supply

Restaurants struggle with supply interruptions, price hikes on top of staff shortages | Dining

Restaurants are continuing to fill up as summer approaches, but they still face challenges as they deal with fallout from the coronavirus pandemic.

As early as February, when restaurants started to see their dining rooms fill up again, they soon realized that they had too few cooks and servers to serve returning crowds — and job applicants were few and far between.

The staff shortage at restaurants continues, but more problems have surfaced in the form of supply shortages or interruptions and price increases.

Margherita Looz at Little Italy Pizza in Rural Hall said that her husband recently ordered 80 cases of fry oil — instead of the usual five or six cases — because they were unsure whether it might be available in coming weeks, or how much more it might cost them.

“You never know what to expect. We can’t depend on getting our full order anymore,” she said.

George Barghout at J&J Food Mart on Broad Street in Winston-Salem, used to get six cases of chicken when he ordered six cases. But in recent months, he might get six, he might get five, he might get four. And he wouldn’t find out until the day the order arrived — or maybe the day before if he was lucky.

Tyson Foods, one of the largest meat companies in the country, was hit hard last year with COVID-19 infections among employees and since then has struggled with understaffed plants and problems with breeding flocks of chickens, according to a June 2 article in the Wall Street Journal.