Catering companies represent one part of Mallorca's hospitality sector and is one that has been hit particularly hard by the restrictions. Balearic government measures limit events to ten people outdoors and prohibit them indoors. Cancellations are said to be running at 80% this year, and as the end of the state of alarm approaches there is no clarity as to what the requirements will be for different events.
On Monday, there was a meeting between representatives from the catering association and the government. The demand was made for a relaxation of measures; catering businesses would normally now be looking forward to their busiest part of the year.
The vice-president, Magdalena Forteza, says that catering companies are bound by the hospitality sector collective bargaining agreement; there has been a delay to a 3.5% salary increase, but only until the end of May. "We find ourselves subject to unfair treatment compared with other businesses. as we have to assume the same fiscal and operating costs despite not being able to work. In the case of catering, there is a limit of ten people, which makes the service impossible. And this is despite the willingness to comply with the same health measures and restrictions as for restaurants."
At the meeting, a proposal was made for antigen tests for people attending events. There is an advantage for catering companies as they have guest lists. "We know who will come and where they will sit. Control is easy." Forteza points out that 90% of catering activity is outdoors. There are large spaces where distance between tables can be guaranteed.
The association was asked by the government representatives to present a health protocol. Everything is now waiting on the government's next measures.