Field to fork: Suppliers hard hit by pandemic feel 'forgotten' about

The catering industry has had a tough year, with thousands of venues shutting their doors for good, but the impact has hit suppliers just as hard.

Businesses in Yorkshire have collectively lost millions of pounds during the pandemic. It is estimated around 10,000 clubs, pubs and restaurants closed last year because of the pandemic.

They are asking for two weeks' notice on reopening when Boris Johnson eases lockdown restrictions, to allow them to get their supply chain in order.

Stephen Johnson owns a fourth generation pig farm on the edge of North Derbyshire, which supplies restaurants and cafes. He said his business stopped overnight.

A new direct delivery service helped shift some of his stock and he hopes to break even at least.

''Suddenly we went from supplying fifty restaurants and cafes to supplying none.''

Stephen supplies Joro restaurant in Sheffield, which has changed the way they work because of the restrictions on the hospitality industry.

Owners of Joro restaurant in Sheffield say the business revenue has dropped significantl for them and their suppliers.. Credit: ITV News

Since the first lockdown most of their twenty five staff have been on furlough and the home delivery service can't compensate for the business they've lost.

''We've accounted for some of the loss but it's meant that we're looking at 50-60% down on revenue.''

Noel  Kershaw, the Managing director of Delifresh, feels suppliers have been forgotten about during the pandemic and the focus on restaurants and pubs.

He said his business has lost the equivalent of two years worth of net profit.

On Monday, the Prime Minister is due to announce his 'roadmap' about how and when England will emerge out of lockdown.