Peter Martin

Peter co-founded M&C Report in 1996. The service has since been rebranded as MCA following its acquisition - and later that of the Allegra Foodservice insight business - by William Reed. Since then Peter has gone on to launch and run other industry services and events, including the Peach Factory (now part of CGA). As Contributing Editor, Peter will bring his unrivalled sector experience and insight to bear through regular comment pieces, exploring the real stories behind the headlines. He will support Editor James Wallin and the editorial team in reinforcing MCA’s reputation as the leading provider of news, insight and events for the eating and drinking out sector.

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    Peter Martin: Going with the grains on healthy eating


    The eating-out market did at least have a fraction more notice of Boris’s new obesity crusade than those planning a Spanish summer holiday received about quarantine. But it still came as an unwelcome surprise for most in the restaurant and pub world, not least because only last week the majority of us were still celebrating the cut in VAT and the launch of the Eat Out to Help Out campaign.

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    Peter Martin: A global problem requires a global perspective


    Anyone who expected England’s pub and restaurant market to spring miraculously back to life all flags flying on the Fourth of July hadn’t read the programme notes. All the data pointed to a sedate reopening. Only just over half of operators said they would be opening even some of their sites. In the end just 45% of pubs and bars welcomed customers back.

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    Peter Martin: The road from farm to fork is going to get bumpier


    Apart from the queues and early shortages of eggs, pasta and flour, the British public has not in general had a problem being fed during the coronavirus crisis.

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    Peter Martin: Cutting the distance with customers


    Last week’s YouGov poll that showed a majority of the British public still in favour of retaining two-metre distancing should not have come as any surprise.

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    Peter Martin: Making hospitality part of the solution


    The weekend’s press brought more tantalising headlines for the hospitality sector. Government fears of a ‘jobs bloodbath’ if the sector failed to reopen in time for the summer would accelerate an easing of the lockdown for pubs and restaurants, the Sunday Times front page splash optimistically predicted.

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    Peter Martin: Why being first isn’t always best


    The good news about hospitality having to wait until at least 4 July to start reopening is that it gives operators another month to prepare and plan. It will be valuable time, not just to hone operational protocols and procedures, but to see how the wider economy starts to function, or not, after its 1 June restart date.

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    Peter Martin: How to make friends, and influence the right people


    The prime minister is safely back in Downing Street, and there are more signs of life in the out-of-home market as the likes of Burger King, Pret a Manger and KFC take tentative steps to reopen sites. But for much of the hospitality and leisure sector the outlook remains uncertain and confusing. Last week’s pronouncement by chief medical officer Chris Whitty that “disruptive” social distancing is likely to be a feature of day-to-day life even until the end of the year, did nothing to calm the nerves of an already under pressure industry.

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    Peter Martin: Speculation and confusion, but still no government plan


    So when will business - and pubs, bars and restaurant in particular - be able to open up again? It’s the question more people are beginning to ask, and the issue that has consumed much of this weekend’s media. The short answer seems to be ‘no time soon’. The press has been full of speculation, not to say confusion, about the Government’s supposed ‘three-point plan’ to start-up the economy, with talk of traffic-light systems, schools the first to open their doors as early as May 11, and even hope for the eating-out market.

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    Peter Martin: If there’s one debt you do need to pay


    So the waiting game begins. After the last weeks of frenetic activity as the hospitality sector lobbied hard for Government lifelines, most companies are locking themselves into survival mode.