Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Virus threatens food catering businesses

Virus threatens food catering businesses

Content image - Phnom Penh Post

Virus threatens food catering businesses

The impact of the Covid-19 outbreak has reached the food catering industry as people across the country stay clear of large gatherings such as weddings.

Cambodia has so far reported 33 cases of Covid-19, with people infected in Phnom Penh, Siem Reap, Banteay Meanchey, Kampong Chhnang, Battambang, Kampot, Tbong Khmum, Kampong Cham, Preah Vihear and Kep provinces.

Ly Seng Catering’s owner, Ly Seng An, told The Post on Tuesday that his business has seen a drop in activity since February. In the last few days, as many as 12 people organising weddings cancelled their reservations due to the fear of infection.

He said the number of bookings has plummeted, which is alarming because this is usually a busy time for the business. “The catering business is now significantly down,” he said.

The size of each wedding has also been affected. Seng An said that a customer recently booked 80 tables for a wedding but then ended up reducing the reservation to just 28 guests as he feared they might not show up.

Other provinces are also beginning to see a drop in the number of weddings.

Sok Chrek, who owns a catering business in Pursat province, said on Tuesday that the situation has drastically changed this year and that there are fewer bookings for weddings. He said those who hired his services were asking for fewer tables.

Organisers and guests are afraid to attend weddings, Chrek said, adding that in contrast, food catering at funerals has not been affected to the same extent.

“Not many people are hiring our services now. We are mostly catering for small events in villages,” he said.

Chan Sopheak, a 27-year-old Phnom Penh resident who agreed to be the groomsman at his friend’s wedding later this month, told The Post that he had to cancel his attendance to the event due to fears of Covid-19.

“I already told the groom’s family that I will not attend the ceremony because I am now having flu-like symptoms and I am afraid it could be Covid-19,” he said.

Watch video:


  • Historic Battambang town bans billboards

    The Battambang town administration informed all house and business owners in Svay Por commune to remove all billboards by August 1 as it is preparing to submit the town to UNESCO for inclusion on its historical cultural heritage list. Its July 25 notice said all signage was

  • All foreigners' accommodations to be inspected: Sar Kheng

    The Ministry of Interior is undertaking a serious effort to inspect all the accommodations of foreigners in Cambodia – except diplomats – in order to find and identify human traffickers. Minister Sar Kheng said this would include inspections on the homes of foreigners employed by businesses, private

  • Ice cream, noodles flagged over carcinogen

    The General Department of Customs and Excise of Cambodia (GDCE) has identified three types of instant noodles and ice cream trademarks originating from Thailand, Vietnam and France that are suspected to contain ethylene oxide, which poses a cancer risk to consumers. The general department has

  • Exclusive interview with Josep Borrell Fontelles, High Representative of the EU

    CAMBODIA is hosting the 55th ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM) and Related Meetings this week with top officials from the US, China, and Russia and other countries in the region slated to attend and to meet with face-to-face with their counterparts on the sidelines. In

  • Rise in Thai air routes to Siem Reap fuels travel hopes

    Local tourism industry players are eager for regional airline Bangkok Airways Pcl’s resumption of direct flight services between the Thai capital and Siem Reap town on August 1 – home of Cambodia’s awe-inspiring Angkor Archaeological Park – which is expected to boost the growth rate of

  • ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ meet commences, Taiwan issue possibly on table

    The 55th ASEAN Foreign Ministers’ Meeting (AMM) and related meetings hosted by Cambodia kicks off in Phnom Penh on August 3, with progress, challenges, and the way forward for the ASEAN Community-building on the table. Issues on Taiwan, sparked by the visit of US House Speaker