Covid's impact on hospitality- Flat Earth Pizzas | Framework Design

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A illustrated dog-man sits in a fiery room with an expression like everything is fine although it is not fine

The impact of the pandemic on the hospitality industry – Flat Earth Pizzas.

A yellow pizza outline on a purple background

The impact of the pandemic on the hospitality industry – Flat Earth Pizzas.

Team member, Amanda Ford

Amanda

The past year and a half has been a difficult time for many businesses in the hospitality industry. Many companies have had to adapt not only their business models but the ways in which they present their brand and communicate with customers. The Framework Interior Design team have been catching up with various businesses to find out more about how they have dealt with the unprecedented impact of COVID-19. One such company we have spoken to is Flat Earth Pizzas.

Flat Earth Pizzas is a London-based pizza restaurant providing meat-free pizzas that are sustainably sourced using seasonal ingredients. Flat Earth Pizzas began at The Plough, Homerton, with the aim of creating ‘Inventive grub that doesn’t hurt the planet.’

 

We first spoke to Flat Earth Pizza early last year about their brand and its development, giving us the opportunity to learn about their values and incredibly tasty pizzas!

Flat Earth has a casual and carefree narrative, with a relaxed, genuine nature, wild, natural, and full of foraged goodness.

The menu is not only rich in flavour but uses beautiful ingredients sourced locally, reflective of their values to support local providers and produce additive-free food.

The vegetables are put at centre stage of Flat Earth Pizza’s offerings, encouraging customers to reduce their meat intake. Utilising all of the ingredients means that the restaurant is ‘zero to landfill’ and all small amounts of unavoidable food waste is turned into fertiliser for local farmers.

We caught up with Rich Baker at Flat Earth Pizzas and chatted to him about the impact the pandemic has had on the business and the industry as a whole. Here is an insight into our chat… 

Can you tell us a bit about the changes that have taken place over the past year and how your brand has adapted during COVID?

Rich: Through communicating a greater focus on our story and purpose and staying active and prominent through other revenue streams and collaborations e.g. mail order kimchi kits with seasonal veg, online recipes to follow, on-topic newsletters, and a more prominent click n collect pizza service from our location.

How do you use digital marketing now as a result of COVID-19?

Rich: We communicate a lot more openly and compassionately, linking up with local charities is an example of something we focus on and share. Currently, we are supporting East London Cares. It is important to stay active and true to what you believe. I think being and championing local is so important to us and the people we work with along with our fellow independent retailers on the high street. The last 18 months have been difficult for many people for many reasons and we hope what we do can positively impact those around us.

What investment in touch-free interactions have you made? ie. online check-in, table ordering systems.

Rich: Personalised online ordering platforms such as Ritual have been a great support to us.

How will the interiors of your restaurant be impacted by the pandemic moving forward? What changes have you made or do you plan to make?

Rich: We follow a sustainable approach to everything we do and want the interiors of our business to have meaning and thought for the environment and planet. Repurposing, energy efficiency, and well-thought-out non-congested open spaces will be key to our 1st build.

How do you feel brand will become even more important in order to get guests back into restaurants?

Rich: We hold ourselves to our values of Openness, Fairness, Exploration, and Elevation – We want every guest to be confident in our integrity to put them at the forefront of what we do. Loyalty is earned through businesses that put their guests well being first. We do this through our food and our principles.

How is wellness now part of your brand?

Rich: Through our choices of menu, supplier, attitude to each other and our guests and by following our mantra of providing ‘meat-free pizzas which are kind to the planet’

What trends would you say have been accelerated or created as a result of COVID-19?

Rich: Apart from the obvious max out on the home delivery of anything and everything quicker and better than before  – I think the need for people to know the source of where their food comes from and what goes into each menu item is the biggest question we are asked now. “Our health begins on our plate” watch this space!

So to wrap up, like many establishments, Flat Earth Pizzas have adapted to find creative ways to move forward through the pandemic, with mail-order kits, online recipes, and a ‘click and collect’ service.

The narrative and values of the brand have become increasingly more important and their commitment to supporting local charities.

Starting a new business at the beginning of the pandemic is no easy feat, yet Rich and Sarah have managed to develop a unique brand that supports local businesses, whilst being rich in values and taste!

We look forward to seeing how Flat Earth Pizzas keep growing and adapting over time.

Framework’s interior design team are conscious of the impact of the pandemic on all types of businesses. Whether you’re looking for a small refresh while you get back on your feet or a full fit-out, we are here to support you. If you would like to enquire about our services, please get in touch, we look forward to chatting with you.

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