Catering establishments in the Netherlands are faced with extra measures. For example, from now on guests must be asked for their contact details for a possible source and contact investigation. Koninklijke Horeca Nederland (KHN) says that the sector will take its responsibility, but also regrets that catering establishments seem to be affected again.
“During the press conference there was a lot of emphasis on the catering industry, while a large part of the infections take place at home or at work,” said general director Dirk Beljaarts. No (possible) location of contamination is known for 70 percent of the infections.
“The prime minister calls on everyone to take his or her responsibility. And if the figures give cause for more attention, then we should all do that together. The appeal is addressed to everyone, not to a specific sector,” says Beljaarts .
The measures announced on Thursday represent a new setback for the sector. After all, many companies are already in dire straits in terms of finances.
For example, it is not excluded that catering establishments must keep the doors closed after midnight. This will first be decided regionally, but may later also take place at national level. If the GGD determines that a corona infection has occurred in a cafe or restaurant, the case in question can be closed for two weeks.
Many catering businesses cannot do that, says Beljaarts, who hopes the cabinet will have an eye for this. “About 45 percent of the catering sector is technically bankrupt. Many companies have to make up a significant financial backlog, so it is quite possible that the big pain will only become visible in the fourth quarter or early next year.”
KHN is still holding out on Thursday night’s announcements. For example, Beljaarts is especially curious about the letter to parliament about the measures and their elaboration.