The impact of coronavirus on the world is a story with an indeterminate beginning, an indiscriminate middle and no discernable end. In addition to inflicting a worldwide death toll in excess of 3 million people, COVID-19 has cut short the business lives of tens of thousands of restaurant owners/operators and hundreds of thousands of foodservice workers. Sadder still, the economic impact from the pandemic has been unevenly distributed in foodservice; most quick-service restaurants (QSR) have experienced record sales while many full-service restaurants (FSR) have experienced historic losses.
QSR was already set up operations-wise to leverage more value around service (speed, efficiency, accuracy) while FSR has seen its unique selling proposition — hospitality — lose value as so many dining rooms shuttered and sporadically half-opened in accordance with the rolling variables of governmental edict. So going forward, the question is: Will the efficiency of service eradicate the desire for hospitality?