A group of restaurant industry leaders have united to create the Catering Council for Multi-Unit Restaurant Operators, an advocacy group focused on addressing regulations, policies, technological changes and best practices in the ‘off-premise’ segment, including takeout, delivery and catering.
Founding members of the CCMURO gathered in Atlanta in June for their first official meeting, and announced plans to work together on issues of common concern as part of a broader initiative to raise the profile of the growing off-premise segment. This includes the development of a common set of operational standards and procedures related to new delivery technologies and start-ups.
“This group is important because it brings together industry professionals looking for solutions that we can all benefit from in our perspective roles. It also looks at factors affecting catering and delivery from a wide-range perspective,” says Barbara Blackwell, director of catering for Bruegger’s Bagels and a member of the group’s communications committee. “I hope to gain a strong network of industry professionals built on authentic relationships and a passion for what we do as leaders.”
As its first priority, the CCMURO plans to launch a ‘Bill of Rights’ for restaurant operators working with third-party delivery providers. The Bill of Rights will outline the obligations of all parties and what operators need to consider when negotiating third-party delivery contracts. In addition, the group will work on a consumer Bill of Rights so users of restaurant delivery services know what they should expect when ordering through third-party providers.
“Having just been through this process, I can honestly say there are many operators who should consider these types of terms and standards when signing third-party contracts,” says Ed Keller, director of off-premise sales for Which Wich Superior Sandwiches, and a member of the group’s advocacy committee. “Through the development of this Bill of Rights, we hope to make the process easier for restaurant operators going through a similar process. Every operator looking into delivery will now have a uniform set of standards that they can follow.”
Other activities of the CCMURO include the development of industry research designed to track trends and sales in the off-premise space.