Oh no! There’s a shortage of curry chefs! What perfect cover for a nice-easy-to-write-standard-pro-immigration piece. The Guardian:
This shortage has been caused by increasingly tough immigration rules, so that restaurants are unable to hire the skilled chefs they need. This makes it difficult for these businesses to grow, while restaurants are unable to provide adequate customer service levels or fulfil orders.
Around 600 curry restaurants have closed in the past 18 months, while there are fears that a further 4,000 – about a third of the industry – could shut.
The shortage of chefs means they demand increasingly high wages. Dr Wali Uddin, who owns the Britannia Spice in Edinburgh, says a chef’s pay packet has doubled in the last two years, and is now up to £700-800 a week.
“Usually I had seven chefs, but now just three,” says Uddin. “There are not enough chefs, so we can’t grow.”
If he’s considering growth, and the only thing stopping him is a chef shortage, business can’t be that bad, right?
And shouldn’t this correct itself: if 600 restaurants have closed in the past 18 months and possibly thousands more might close, there’ll be a point where the chefs outnumber the jobs. Right? Or have I been skim-reading my Cliff Notes to Adam Smith too inattentively?
Alun Sperring, owner of the Chilli Pickle in Brighton, says chefs are now demanding free accommodation, which is “totally unfeasible”. He adds that bringing over a highly trained chef from Asia for a short stint adds “authenticity” to the cuisine and inspires the other staff.
‘Authenticity’ and ‘inspiration.’ Such classic non-tangibles!
Restaurateurs, led by the British Curry Awards founder Enam Ali, are now pushing the government to ease immigration restrictions.
I reckon these guys want to bring in loads of cheap third-world chefs. Pay ‘em £150 a week, and sack anybody who demands more. Where’s the chefs union when you need ‘em?
A 75-page document, seen by the Guardian, that Ali and his supporters have submitted to Cameron, May, the employment minister Priti Patel and business secretary Sajid Javid, is now urging them to introduce a one-year visa for chefs from sub-continental Asia. If this plan isn’t adopted, warns Ali, it could hurt the Conservatives in elections.
I’m sure they’re quaking in their boots.
Until 2005 there was a sector-based visa scheme that let curry restaurants fly in skilled staff, but this was closed amid allegations that it was abused by immigrants who wanted to settle in the UK permanently.
What? Immigrants abused the system? I’m shocked! Who ever heard of immigrants abusing anything!?
Anyway, what was the system… fly in a skilled chef from some crappy country, pay him pittance… but pittance, being a decent amount in the crappy country, is fine by him (until he learns he can’t buy much in the UK with it).
Meanwhile, the local skilled chefs, who need more than pittance to live in expensive-as-hell UK, are screwed.
I don’t know do I? I don’t understand this stuff… All I know is The Guardian = propaganda.