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Buffet-style restaurant chains to become victims of COVID-19

The San Diego Union-Tribune 05/07/2020

The 97 buffet-style restaurants operating under the Souplantation and Sweet Tomatoes banners are closing their doors for good after temporarily closing down due to the coronavirus outbreak. “The FDA had previously put out recommendations that included discontinuing self-serve stations, like self-serve beverages in fast food, but they specifically talked about salad bars and buffets,” said John Haywood, CEO of Garden Fresh, the parent company of the two chains. “The regulations are understandable, but unfortunately, it makes it very difficult to reopen… We’ve worked for eight weeks to overcome these intermittent financial challenges but it doesn’t work if we are not allowed to continue our model.”

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