Austrian suppliers to the catering and hotel industry are slowly but surely running out of steam. The Ministry of Finance is struggling to find a solution. The affected industries, on the other hand, are growing impatient. "We are not closed by the authorities and hardly receive any replacement business," say representatives of a new initiative.
For Josef Mathy, owner of a family-run fruit wholesaler based in Linz, the current Corona crisis is also accompanied by considerable sales losses. "During the first lockdown, 60 percent of sales disappeared overnight. We deliver as far out as Tyrol, where hotels were still ordering on Friday and had to close on Monday. We were sitting on tons of fruit. We were better prepared for the second lockdown and procured much less," he says in an interview with OÖN.
The company's headquarters in Linz / Photo: Mathy GmbH
Alternative sources of revenue
As an alternative to catering deliveries, Mathy started delivering fruit crates to private households in March. This was an 'emergency solution,' he says. "This line of business is more for employee employment than for business. Our people start at three in the morning, and we don't want to lose them. This year will see us making a loss."
The traditional company has been trying to find new sources of revenue. That's why it fell out of the fixed-cost subsidy, he said. "But our replacement business is not profitable due to the costly logistics and deliveries. We would do need help, because the costs remain, but the volumes just aren't there."