Milestones of Lahore Restaurant Unity (LRU) in supporting Restaurant business in Lahore
Aamer Rafique Qureshi is the founder and chairperson of Lahore Restaurant Unity Association. Since its inception in April 2020 Lahore Restaurant Unity Association dedicatedly and singlehandedly raised its concern regarding the negative impact of lockdown on Restaurant business. Unity is committed to supporting employers and employees in the Restaurant industry who has to suffer a major setback due to the prevailing pandemic situation. One of the major concerns raised by the Unity was that lockdown has impacted the financial standing of many big and small Restaurant businesses alike.
During the lockdown, the entire staff of restaurants and cafes got dispersed due to a prolonged period of inactivity. This led to the loss of signature style developed by the cafes and restaurants and cut down in their menus. Lahore Restaurant Unity Association (LRU) took a firm stance in doing activism for the rights of Restaurant owners, stakeholders, employees, or anyone directly or indirectly affected by the non-operational restaurant business including vendors.
The motto of Lahore Restaurant Unity Association is that the restaurant business is the backbone of the economy of Lahore. The government should take effective measures to help this major city of Pakistan which generates up to $100 billion revenue in GDP to overcome the economic crisis in the wake of the pandemic.
Following are the four major milestones achieved by Lahore Restaurant Unity Association (LRU):
Raised voice for reopening of restaurant businesses in Lahore
The Lahore Restaurant Unity Association took a firm stance in its activism to re-open the restaurant businesses to prevent further incurring losses. This turned out to be quite successful and after tremendous efforts of The Lahore Restaurant Unity Association, the restaurants all across Lahore were reopened by the government in the record time of 150 days.
Suggested the SOPs for restaurants
Lahore Restaurant Unity Association actively participated in suggesting SOPs to the government for reopening restaurants. These suggestions were later included in the official SOPs framework of government. In its capacity, Lahore Restaurant Unity Association has done thorough research through various collaborations to develop SOPs for the operations of restaurants in the post-lockdown scenario. Lahore Restaurants Unity Association forwarded these SOPs to all the restaurants that are on-board and ensured that these SOPs are being followed uniformly.
Provided a bigger platform to raise concerns
Before the inception of Lahore Restaurant Unity Association (LRU), other associations were quite scattered. But Aamer Qureshi consolidated these associations into one bigger Unity where the voice of everyone is being heard be it, owners or vegetable vendors. There is no discrimination in this Unity.
Involved the top management
Lahore Restaurant Unity Association was able to achieve real-time goals with the help of top management. They helped Unity throughout the journey and guided them through the way. Some of the notables are President of Lahore Chamber of Commerce Sheikh Irfan Iqbal, Federation of Pakistan Mian Anjum Nisar, and Mian Aslam Iqbal, Provincial minister of Industries, Commerce, and Investment and Skill development.
Research and Development in Restaurant Industry
Lahore Restaurant Unity Association (LRU) was involved in activism regarding restaurant business reopening and the development of SOPs for the operations of the restaurant business. The consistent efforts of the Lahore Restaurant Unity Association turned out to be fruitful as the top management got engaged with Lahore Restaurant Unity Association and the suggestions of LRU were taken up by the government while formulating the framework of SOPs for restaurant operations. Lahore Restaurant Unity Association is the pioneer of research and development in the restaurant industry of Pakistan. It has the honor of doing in-depth research through various collaborations to develop SOPs for restaurant operation at par with world-class public health and safety measures.
Since the restaurant industry is slowly recovering the repercussions of closing down operations during the lockdown, it is a crucial time for re-negotiation of the expectations with the customers. Customers are much more demanding than before, not in terms of price, selection, or menu but terms of their perceptions of health, safety, cleanliness, and quality. The entire realm of personal hygiene and standards of cleanliness are revolutionized in the post-pandemic world. Restaurants are especially being scrutinized for their food quality and supply chain.
The table service segment of the restaurant business is the one that is under-going most changes. Some of the standard practices initiated by the joint efforts of Lahore Restaurant Unity Association (LRU) are as following:
- Increased spacing between dining tables
- Breaking up larger halls into smaller sections
- Greater access and visibility of hygiene products such as sanitizers in public areas.
- Cutlery and glassware are cleaned at the table side for the assurance of customer
- Covering meal-plates
Progressive restaurant brands have always emphasized the importance of supply chain visibility and the ability to track respective orders from farm to food plate to ensure the standards of quality to the consumer. Restaurant owners are supposed to decisively act at this crucial moment to any concern that is being raised about their commitment to the notion of providing quality food and a clean environment.
Lahore Restaurant Unity Association has ensured that all the restaurants and associations on-board are at par with the health and safety standards in the context of post-pandemic setup. LRU is committed to up-grading the restaurant industry as per the world-class standards of health and safety while at the same time ensuring that the sustainability of the restaurant business isn’t put at stake. Lahore Restaurant Unity Association has the mission of strengthening the Research and Development in the restaurant industry to support the economy of the restaurant business in Lahore.