Central’s Week in Brief: September 9, 2011

restaurantEvery Friday Central brings you stories from the week that you might have missed, but that are definitely worth a look. We’ll feature food news covering everything from the weird to the wonderful in the world of restaurants, schools, the military and more.  It’s our way to help you go into the weekend with a little extra knowledge and maybe even a project or recipe to try out!

1)      Zagat, the worldwide restaurant guide, has had a pretty big week.  First, they released their annual National Fast Food Restaurant Survey which covered 103 different chains.  The 6,064 diners surveyed named Subway as the top Mega Chain, Five Guys as best Large Chain and Starbucks as the number one Quick Refreshment.   Click here for a more comprehensive list of the survey results. 

After releasing the survey, it was then announced that the company was being bought out by web giant Google.  Zagat founders, Nina and Tim Zagat, plan to stay on to help with the guide’s expansion and  assist Google in connecting more easily with local businesses.

2)      Like Google, Dominos Pizza is also looking to expand its reach…all the way to the moon.  The Japanese arm of the pizza chain announced that they are planning to build a base on the moon which will cost about $21 billion for construction, transportation and equipment.  The goal of the base is to be available for those who may one day be working and eventually living on the moon.   However, there is no actual date for when the project will begin.

3)      With a rise in popularity, ultimately there will be a backlash.  The current food truck trend is no exception to this rule.  Food trucks all over the country have been running into regulations and lawsuits over everything from proximity to tax issues.  This is where Bert Gall comes in to save the day.  According to the Wall Street Journal, “A senior attorney at the Institute for Justice, Gall directs the institute’s National Street Vending Initiative, which bills itself as ‘a nationwide effort to vindicate the right of street vendors to earn an honest living by fighting unconstitutional vending restrictions in courts of law and the court of public opinion’.”  So if your food truck is in trouble, Bert Gall is the man to have on your side.

4)      This month is the 17th Annual National Food Safety Education Month (NFSEM).  NFSEM encourages a focus on food safety education and training within the foodservice industry.  This year, there will be free weekly training sessions, tips and downloads all available at www.ServSafe.com/nfsem.   According to the NRA Show site, “All NFSEM materials are based on the National Restaurant Association’s ServSafe® food safety training and certification program.”

5)      September is also Hunger Action Month which was launched by Feeding America.  The point of Hunger Action Month is to raise awareness of hunger relief throughout the world and encourage the public to step into action to eliminate it domestically.   By visiting the Hunger Action Month site, you can find local events and food banks, see where the highest rate of hunger is in your state and even watch videos like the one below.

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