Slow Food NYC and Brooklyn Uncorked

Chickens-773x580Looking for an opportunity to help grow the urban farming movement, and score some tickets to a great event at the same time? If you contribute to Slow Food NYC’s urban harvest program this week, you’ll be entered to win two tickets to Brooklyn Uncorked – Edible magazine’s annual local wine fest, taking place May 26th.

Of course, you can still buy tickets to the 10th annual Uncorked, which will feature over 25 wine and food vendors ranging from the Brooklyn Winery to Orwasher’s Bakery to our friends and colleagues at Nobletree Coffee. But consider donating as well – you’ll help student farmers learn about eating locally, healthfully and sustainably at Slow Food’s tuition-free farm in East New York.

To read more and donate, click here. For tickets to Brooklyn Uncorked, click here.

Jobless Claims at Their Lowest in 42 Years

In a bright sign for all industries, jobless claims in the U.S. declined unexpectedly last week to hit 253,000, the lowest since November of 1973. Jobless claims are a measure of the number of Americans filing for unemployment, and their decrease indicates employers that are upbeat about the economy, increasing hiring and expanding employee headcount.

The number of continuing claims from those already receiving unemployment benefits also fell, and for 58 consecutive weeks claims have been below the 300,000 level that economists say is typically consistent with an improving job market. Data from the labor department also indicates more employees voluntarily leaving their jobs, indicating confidence that they will be able to find another.

Besides the economic growth that brings revenue to small businesses, a decrease in claims also means lower rates of unemployment insurance – good news all around for the hospitality industry.

To read more, click here.

Seamless Now Has Its Own Delivery Drivers in NYC

GettyImages-464182497.0.jpgSince 2014, Seamless has been quietly testing its “turnkey delivery service” – drivers and bikers whom restaurants without their own in-house delivery team can use to deliver food through the app. We say “quietly” because it’s impossible to tell through the Grubhub/Seamless interface which restaurants are using these delivery people, and which are using their own, and the company has declined to say just how many restaurants are using the service.

In the last few months, they’ve rolled out the delivery service in Brooklyn and Queens, mentioning popular spots like Mighty Quinn’ and No. 7 North as early adopters. It’s an attempt to compete in a crowded marketplace with companies like UberEats, Postmates and DoorDash, while still giving flexibility to restaurants that would like to continue using their own delivery teams. The pricing structure is similarly flexible – delivery is an added service, with an added commission charge of about 14%. Add that to their flat commission fee of around 15%, and the margins shrink fairly rapidly – although other delivery services top out at 30% already.

To read more, click here.