Business and Operations
Health & Safety
What pizzerias are doing in response to the pandemic
By Canadian Pizza
By Canadian Pizza
Pizzerias have been hit hard by social distancing restrictions brought about by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Here’s a look at what some are doing to help their communities, inform customers and creatively shore up their bottom line.
After discussions with relatives in hard-hit Italy, Paul Mollica, owner of Pie-Zano’s in Chatham, Ont., made the difficult decision to close the pizzeria’s doors temporarily, but not before using all of the products they had in stock to make as many pizzas as possible to give to local police officers, firefighters, paramedics and staff at their local hospital a free dinner.
Mickey’s Pizza in Mississauga, Ont., has been outlining its cleaning and safety measures from early on in videos. Owner Sandy Stoyan regularly expresses gratitude to customers, the community, first responders and the government. They are staying open later, as needed, to encourage social distancing:
“Please be aware that although (our hours) are reduced your safety comes first. We are spacing people apart for pickups to keep everyone separate and allowing time to bleach between people being served. For this reason if we have to extend hours for you to safely pickup we will.”
Frank’s Pizza House in Toronto quickly closed its dining room and asked the community to look out for one another and asked people to tip the pizzeria off to people who need food but may not be able to afford it.
Wabo’s Pizza, Sub & Donair in Cheticamp, N.S., is working with its distributor, Sysco, to become a community grocer, offering such items as flour, sugar, bacon and facial tissue.
Many pizzerias are creating assemble-at-home pizza kits. Here’s one from The Lock Wood Fired Pizza in Port Colborne, Ont.
Descendant Detroit Style Pizza in Toronto is selling beer, wine and cider for takeout to its loyal customers.
Black Rock Pizzeria & Bakery in Blairmore, Alta., is selling draft beer to go, make-at-home pizza kits and fresh baked bread. The pizzeria has seen an uptick in sales of their custom-made desserts.
Matador Pizza & Steakhouse in Calgary stepped up its focus on delivery and takeout and went into mass production of comfort food aimed at feeding medical staff and first responders.
In the U.S., Slice Out Hunger, an organization that produces pizza-related events and campaigns to support hunger relief and prevention initiatives, has launched Pizza Vs Pandemic. The campaign is raising money to feed health-care workers, first responders and care centres. Since March 21, and as of April 16, the campaign has raised $350,000 with the help of 5.3 million donors – feeding 348 centres.
Let us know what is happening in your pizza business. And watch for in-depth coverage of resilient Canadian pizzerias in the May/June issue of Canadian Pizza magazine.