On No More Takeout Cocktails and Chefs Worrying About the Rising Cost of Food

The Intelligence Brief is our weekly compendium of food and drink news sourced from outlets all over the world, including right here at home.

On Friday, provincial health authorities announced 72 new cases of Covid-19 and 108 people in hospital. This is the lowest number of hospitalizations within the province since November. In addition, over 77% of adults in BC have received a first dose of the vaccine which suggests another easing of restrictions will be coming later this week. So, as we await the July 1st announcement, we continue to cover how the bar and restaurant industry is faring…

First up, this record-breaking heatwave is forcing some restaurants and breweries in the Lower Mainland to close temporarily due to safety concerns.

Meanwhile, here’s how Portland’s food carts prepared for triple digit temperatures.

As BC is on the brink of another easing of restrictions, Vancouver is Awesome shares information about provincial reopening plans across the country.

Just as restaurants in NYC begin to rebound from months of closures and reduced capacity, the city is doing away with its to-go cocktail program.

A post-pandemic rise in food costs are top-of-mind for chefs and restaurant owners from coast to coast.

As emergency funding comes to an end, advocates are calling for significant investments into long-term food security.

A VNFN report released last week says $1.76 million — around 0.1 per cent of the city’s budget — would be enough to hire 22 full-time staff to coordinate food security programs in communities across the city. “That’s one full-time position in every community centre in the city, which would put Vancouver on the map as a world leader in addressing food security,” Marcuse said.

The Vancouver Sun’s Mia Stainsby checks out the goods at the recently opening Aburi To-Go.

Over at the Globe and Mail, Alexandra Gill is sharing brunch recommendations and the new Maxine’s land high on the list.

And in case that wasn’t quite enough new spots to check out, head on over to Mount Pleasant to see what’s on the menu at the recently opened Oh Carolina!

While it is exciting to check out new spots around the city, Grub Street reminds us that there is something lovely about returning to old favourites after months of closures and takeout.

Surprise, surprise! A recent report from SFU shows that pay inequities were a driving factor for thousands of women leaving the workforce during the pandemic:

“Nearly 350,000 Canadian women who lost their jobs during the pandemic hadn’t returned to work as of February 2021, highlighting existing gender inequalities and pushing women’s employment to a two decade low……In accommodation and food services — which includes restaurant and hotel staff — the median weekly wage is $600 and 55 per cent of employees are women, according to the report. Women accounted for 56 per cent of pandemic job losses in this sector.”

Between a rock and a hard place: Eater explains why delivery apps have many restaurants feeling trapped.

A tough nut to crack: pistachio and almond thieves in California are becoming increasingly sophisticated in their tactics.

“Organized agricultural crime rings have long targeted California’s pistachio and almond growers, and theft is becoming more of a serious concern as production has increased in recent years.”

And finally, in case you’re in need to of some cuteness in your life this week, Vancouver is now home to the very first bunny cafe in North America.

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