There are many initiatives that the pastry sector is carrying out around the world to face the pandemic, but how is COVID-19 really impacting small chocolate companies, cocoa production, and professionals? Fine Cacao and Chocolate Institute (FCCI) has just released surveys that give objective data on how the coronavirus affects these three fronts.
The survey aimed at pastry and chocolatiers shows that these professionals currently face mainly, due to the health crisis, job insecurity (63%), personal financial debt (39%), and risk of contagion (37%). “Only 8% do not perceive any of these challenges,” says José López Ganem, researcher at the FCCI.
The research also focuses on how companies and employees are implementing different practices to face the pandemic, with delivery (35%) being the most popular service, followed by e-commerce (27%), and gift cards (24%). However, Ganem points out, “only 9% of those surveyed have used crowdfunding, although it has been widely promoted on social media.”
Without a doubt, one of the great allies to maintain commitment and communication with consumers in these times is social networks. Only 9% prefer not to use these applications, while 61% use them to share recipes, tips, etc., 45% participate in pastry forums and online conferences, 38% share more personal experiences, and 37% promote their team or workplace.
There is more pessissism when it comes to the impact that the coronavirus will have on the sector. Thus, for example, about 60% believe that there will be a reduction in pastry equipment, 49% a decrease in the hiring budget, and 35% a decrease in wages. And what about post-coronavirus food trends? Slow Food, the influence of social networks, and organic certification are in the top 3.
Regarding their professional aspirations, 57.3% confess that they have not met their objectives, 46.6% think that the trade provides a financial and health safety net, and 62.1% would choose this profession again despite the crisis.
The survey has been conducted with 210 pastry chefs, chocolatiers, business owners, and bakers with 37 Michelin stars combined and from all over the world (34.7% US / Canada, 31.9% Europe, 22.9% Latin America, 7.6% Asia and 2.8% other areas).