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Restaurants battle trucking woes

The shortage of truck drivers is impacting your dining experience in Door and Kewaunee counties. It is just among the many battles restaurant owners are facing in addition to rising food costs and their own hiring woes. Some businesses in Door and Kewaunee counties have had to go out and do their own grocery shopping because some of their vendors have cut their deliveries in half or in some cases have stopped coming altogether.

Village Kitchen owner Chris Jacobs works with three different vendors to make sure she has enough to get through the week, and even then there are a number of items she can not consistently receive. To fill in the gaps, she has shopped locally to make sure her dishes are complete. She knows she is not alone, but admits it does make planning harder when she is not sure what she will be putting in refrigerator and freezer on a nightly basis.

Sonny’s Italian Kitchen manager Nolan Paschke used to have four truck deliveries a day to make sure it can get through its busiest part of the season. Now they have to double on what they order because they are lucky to get two deliveries a week. He says they have been planning their menu accordingly to make sure their guests get what they want at the quality they expect.

Both Jacobs and Paschke thanked their employees and their customers for being patient and understanding during these unique times. Last month, members of the federal transportation and labor departments and the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration discussed ways it can address the truck driver shortage including lowering the minimum age for interstate drivers, bypassing some steps of the immigration certification process, and devising strategies to improve employee retention.


Pictures from Village Kitchen and Sonny's Italian Kitchen's respective Facebook pages

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