Under a banner of “enough is enough” and calls for government change, chef Neil Perry has added political powerbroker to his CV as the founding chair of a new industry association. The newly minted Australian Restaurant and Cafe Association (ARCA), announced on Friday, May 31, is already making waves, stepping on the turf of a century-old stalwart.

Over recent months, in kitchens and restaurant alcoves across the country, hospitality heavyweights have been plotting the birth of ARCA, with a clear mandate to push the case of restaurants and cafes to government on a range of issues, from skilled worker immigration, wages and tax, right down to micro issues such as outdoor dining.

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