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Customers cook, wash plates & pay for meal as dearth of S’poreans in F&B sees restaurants go fully self-service

Customers cook, wash plates & pay for meal as dearth of S’poreans in F&B sees restaurants go fully self-service

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Customers must prepare, cook and serve food by themselves, for themselves.


As the food and beverage industry prepares itself for the worst in expectations of being hit hard by manpower shortages in the next few months due to lesser and lesser Singaporeans taking up jobs waiting tables and serving food, a brand new dining concept is expected to hit our shores.

Called “fully self-service restaurants”, they are expected to be launched island-wide at 28 different locations.

The restaurants are colloquially named “Cook Yourself”, a reference to Singaporeans’ poor grammar and concise speak.

Fully self-service restaurants would see customers buying their own raw ingredients to the F&B eatery, preparing the food, cooking them in the restaurants’ kitchens and serving the food to themselves, as the number of locals working in the industry continues to dwindle.

All these without a single service staff employed by the restaurant to get in the way.

This latest concept is less a marketing gimmick than a bid to overcome the foreseeable and prolonged manpower shortages in the volatile F&B industry, where nation-wide cuts in foreign labourers will see eateries closing down or coming up with new ideas to survive.

How the self-service restaurants function is quite similar to regular restaurants. Except customers are expected to do everything themselves.

The restaurants will only be providing tables, chairs and air-conditioning, besides napkins and the complementary plate of peanuts.

CEO of Cook Yourself, Kar Kee Lai, said: “Being able to prepare your own meal would empower Singaporeans to do more with their lives.”

Customers can call to make prior reservations, provided other customers are on hand in the restaurant to answer their calls and take their reservations.

Otherwise, all seating and availability in the kitchen will be based on a first-come-first-serve basis.

Customers are expected to take turns using the restaurants’ kitchen to marinate and cook their own food. After which they must wash their own dishes.

They have the option to cook for other customers, but all profits will be paid to the restaurant.

The collection of payment is also self-service and they can choose to pay by cash or card. The cash register will be manned by customers.

The last few customers who finish dining at night will be expected to mop the floor and close up before they leave.

Anybody who tries to cheat, will be referred to The Police.

Who will come by and taser you.


More F&B news in Singapore:

Hawkers cook tastier food when Gordon Ramsay showed up

Gordon Ramsay opening 50 chili crab restaurants in S’pore