It would appear that some restaurants, hostelries and cookery schools have been targeted by fraudsters looking to charge them for inclusion in the next edition of the Good Food Guide. In a recent statement, the legitimate publication and victim of this duplicitous act is trying to warn anyone in the hospitality trade not to fall for this scam.
The letter’s circulation has been brought to the attention of the legitimate The Good Food Guide after restaurants received invitations from an organisation calling itself the ‘Good Food Guide Limited‘, who allegedly have sent the erroneous letter in a mass mail marketing drive asking for cash in exchange for page space in their publication. It would appear that some establishments, seeing the opportunity of a bit of extra good publicity, have already parted with readies to the fraudulent organisation; they have not been named.
However, it is not saying that there will not be a collection of restaurants who have paid for space and will, at some stage, appear in a collection from a company called ‘Good Food Guide Limited’. If the restaurant owners who have paid for that privilege appear in such a book, it is unclear what law will have actually been broken.
The legitimate The Good Food Guide denies any connection
The first and most important point that the real The Good Food Guide wishes to point out is that it never charges organisations to appear in its pages. If it did, it would be nothing more than a series of advertisements and page space would go to the restaurants willing to part with the most money. It has never, nor ever will, ask for cash donations from restaurateurs, landlords, breweries or caterers in return for prime page location.
Joe Public helps decide who’s in the publication
The only way restaurants can get into the established guide is by being good at what they do. Based on recommendation by members of the public, incognito members of The Good Food Guide will visit a premises and rate them accordingly.
Or, if public sway is voluminous and persuasive enough about their fine dining experience, that will not necessitate a visit. Either way, it is the verified quality, by inspection or popularity, that gets restaurants into the popular annual publication.
Vigilance urged by The Good Food Guide spokeswoman
The publisher of the compilation of the best restaurants and eateries in the UK, Angela Newton, spoke out on behalf of all the staff involved in putting this tome together, year after year.
She denied outright any involvement with either the production of the letter or association with the organisation behind it, Good Food Guide Limited, although she did admit to knowing of the letter’s circulation. The culprits are being sought out and the matter investigated.
Rules of inclusion spelt out and underlined
Newton went on to stress that featured restaurants only ever appear in their book following the readership’s feedback or their own visits to restaurants and subsequent inspections carried out anonymously to verify recommendations or see if standards are being maintained from eateries that have featured in previous editions of the tome.
If your restaurant, café, public house or cookery school has received such a letter, Newton confirmed ‘…it has not come from us!’ Anyone who has received such a demand should e-mail the publication direct at firstname.lastname@example.org.