The employment issues eating away at today’s curry houses.

In 1810, the UK saw the opening of The Hindoostane Coffee House founded by Sake Dean Mahomed; the first Indian restaurant to arrive in the UK. Just over 200 years later, the same building stands in Westminster, proudly wearing a commemorative badge, and curry holds the title for the nation’s favourite dish. In an industry said to be worth billions, restaurants should be thriving with the national adoration for spice. However, in 2011 over 600 food businesses failed, and Indian restaurants situated in popular areas of London are
beginning to close. So why is the Indian food industry showing signs of decline?

A contributing factor to the number of restaurant closures is the staffing issues facing businesses. Restaurant owners are finding it increasingly difficult to find skilled staff who understand the complexity of combining Indian spices and flavours. Due to this shortage, a number of restaurants are failing to reach their full potential. Traditionally, a business would be passed down through generations, along with years of culinary experience and secrets.

Full article in Chaat! Magazine issue 13

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