BENGALURU: Ever since the outbreak of coronavirus has created a scare around the world, fake news and myths have shrouded people’s minds. From Corona beer issuing a notice that coronavirus has nothing to do with their product, it has also inadvertently created an impact on restaurants serving South East Asian cuisines in Bengaluru.
“Coronavirus has definitely affected the business, particularly restaurants serving non-vegetarian food. More people are becoming aware of this and eventually getting scared. They feel eating meat will affect them,” says Puneeth Reddy, owner, Angrezi-Bollywood Bar & Kitchen.
Prathik Shetty, owner, Reservoire, says there has not been a sharp decline, but it has made a difference in the way the restaurant is selling non-vegetarian items after the scare. “The main concern is with the meat. We have locally sourced meat, which is not a problem. Sauces are also made in-house, so we don’t receive Chinese products.
There are a couple of questions that customers ask, so we make it very clear to them that it is perfectly safe to have non vegetarian items as they don’t have any South East influence as such,” he says, adding that there has been a slight drop in home delivery of Chinese items. “There has been a 15-20 per cent drop in Chinese items. People are preferring Indian and Continental cuisine more,” he mentions.
For Pot ‘O’ Noodles, the home deliveries have not been affected in any way. “We get the same number of orders from the customers for both lunch and dinner,” says Subhankar Dhar, chef and owner of the restaurant which serves both Chinese and Japanese cuisines. He adds, “We have had guests check with us on the meat and ingredients before ordering. There are meat eaters who are ordering vegetarian dishes because they want to be on the safer side.”
Amrit Grewal, head marcomm, Massive Restaurants, on the other hand, says they haven’t had any guest who would hesitate to try Chinese food. “We don’t use any products from China. We only serve items from India and Singapore,” he says.Some Bengalureans want to be on the safer side, so they have stopped eating non-vegetarian dishes both at home and outside. “With the virus spreading so rapidly, it’s necessary to take precautions. A little caution does no harm, which is why I have stopped eating eggs, which is otherwise my staple breakfast. Based on how things pan out, I will take a call as to when I can resume eating eggs,” says Megha K, student.
But a few of them are informed and don’t mind consuming meat during an epidemic. “’I have read extensively about coronavirus. A lot of fake news is spreading about consumption of meat. I work at an airport and have more chances of getting affected at my workplace than through my eating habit. Also, anything that is being cooked kills bacteria and viruses, so meat is safe to consume,” says Syed Adnan, a marketing professional.