Takeaway boom makes it sweet and sour for fast food sector

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Orders of Chinese takeaways have nearly quadrupled in the UK over the past four weeks, according to Flipdish, the online ordering system for restaurants and takeaways.

Demand has boomed 272 per cent, only beaten by Indian food which has increased a whopping 294 per cent in the past month with Pakora being the most popular dish.

By contrast, pizza, has seen a modest increase in orders since the lockdown, rising 82 per cent. Chip shops and Thai restaurants have experienced a surge of 130 and 48 per cent, respectively.

Conor McCarthy: surging demand

With schools in lockdown and parents desperate to feed their children, the platform has noticed the country’s ordering habits shifting to earlier in the day with 15 per cent of orders swinging from evening to between 15:00-18:00.

Flipdish has continued to experience a surge in demand with a 60 per cent increase in new sign-ups from February to March as it keeps supporting more of the UK’s restaurants. The data shows that those restaurants that have transformed have more than doubled sales (150 per cent) since lockdown. Conor McCarthy, CEO of Flipdish, said: “The crisis has been a sweet and sour experience for the hospitality industry. Those restaurants, pubs, hotels and cafés that created an online presence during the coronavirus crisis are now facing surging demand as Brits stay at home to protect themselves and the NHS. With lockdown due to continue, there is still time to transform and keep serving customers.

“By ordering takeaway food, the public is helping to keep independent restaurants alive. Everyone who can, should support their local establishments. Otherwise, when we emerge from lockdown, the UK’s amazing food scene will be unrecognisable.”

He added: “The options of food available online is broadening. We’ve been supporting high-end hotels, and even our first Michelin-starred restaurant, transform into takeaways to keep those in lockdown enjoying their favourite dishes.