Want to support local? This chef says choose direct delivery
EDMONTON -- Local restaurants are re-thinking their business models as the COVID-19 pandemic continues, finding ways to continue to operate without eat-in customers.
Woodshed Burgers is embracing a takeout and delivery model but will not work with third-party delivery services.
"I just couldn't stomach the idea of giving that much away," chef and owner Paul Shufelt told CTV Morning Live Edmonton.
Services like Uber Eats and Skip the Dishes charge restaurants between 16 and 30 per cent of each sale.
Shufelt broke down the math in a video online.
After goods, labour, variable and fixed costs, he says an efficient restaurant will net about five per cent profit.
When you lose the dine-in business, the margins become even tighter.
"When your scenario is that all of your business is takeout or delivery and you're giving away a third of that revenue to a third-party delivery system and asking your service staff and your front-of-house staff to basically stay at home and collect unemployment, it just doesn't sit well with me," he said.
Instead, Shufelt has kept the staff at Woodshed Burgers and Workshop Eatery working, taking orders and delivering them to customers supporting the local restaurant directly.
"You're keeping our staff employed and you're helping to support a great business and not having to give part of that revenue away to somebody else," he said.
A list of restaurants that are still open and offering delivery is available on the Things That Are Open website, which launched in Edmonton in March.