Presidents Report – January

President Liam Edwards

I hope everyone had a Happy Christmas and a Good New Year on both a personal and business level!

Let’s hope there were more shows than no shows! We will tackle this issue head on before Christmas comes around again.

We have had a busy December in the Association. On the 12th we were invited to present to the Joint Oireachtas Committee for Business, Enterprise and Innovation where we discussed the cost of doing business in Ireland. We sat side by side with the Irish Farmers Association and Construction Federation Ireland. I firmly believe the committee had more to ask us then time permitted and showed a genuine interest in the rising cost of operating a restaurant. The Department issued notice this week of a review of the criteria for work permits for non- EEA workers. Let’s hope this is a sign of changes to come to help alleviate the issue of chef shortages.

The RAI Events team have been putting the finishing touches to the 2018 Irish Restaurant Awards which promise to be bigger than last year. The launch takes place in Chapter One on Wednesday 10th of January. Get your social media expert on the ready, to encourage your customers and patrons to vote for you!

The Global Hospitality Tech Summit will take place on the 6th and 7th of February in City West. This will examine the recent trends in our industry and provide ideas and networking opportunities to build restaurant and food service businesses. There is a great line up of World renowned speakers attending across the two-day event. You can register here.

Finally, our AGM and President’s dinner will take place in the newly refurbished Adare Manor on the 5th of March. The details of AGM will be released in the next few weeks, but we have a great room rate for people who wish to attend, which you can book now directly with the hotel. I know everyone, myself included, can’t wait to see how this truly wonderful hotel looks after the investment by JP McManus.

Liam Edwards,

President, RAI