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Eating out more expensive as prices rise

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Grabbing a bite at a restaurant or watching a football game at a pub over a pint with friends may cost consumers up to 25% more as increases in energy and food items force hospitality venues to reconsider their price list.

In comments to the Financial Mirror, Phanos Leventis of the Leisure and Entertainment Establishment Owners Association said that price hikes in energy and raw materials are overwhelming venues.

“If we consider that the cost of energy, electricity and gas has increased by up to 40%, you realize that these alone would justify increases imposed by businesses,” said Leventis.

He said some restaurants have already gone ahead and increased prices by 10-15%, while hiking costs could push them up by 25%.

Asked if price increases were met with reactions from customers, Leventis argued that a 10% increase does put people off from dining out or drinking at a bar.

“Going out for dinner or a drink is not something Cypriots do regularly, so it will not burden their budgets to the extent that they might think of limiting their outings or ordering out.”

A dinner for two, as he said, could cost costumers an extra €5, “which is not prohibitive”.

“That being said, as an association, we are advising our members to shoulder as much of the increase in costs as they can, to protect the sector from turbulence”.

Leventis explained that the increases would mainly concern dishes that the restauranteur will have to dig deeper in his pocket to buy raw ingredients.

“These are mainly imported products such as sauces that are not produced in Cyprus, and the import companies have increased prices due to the increase of transport costs.

“There is also an increase in the price of frying oils which reaches 80%.”

The association has sent out guidelines on the best use of ingredients to limit waste while preparing dishes.

“Businesses should be twice as careful when putting in orders and buying items, making sure that no food or ingredients are wasted. Zero food waste is our motto.”