The Afghan urban population has started to become more positive about eating out which has, in turn, encouraged many women to move into the food preparation business. Although in 2020 restrictions imposed due to COVID-19 did affect such services now that many limitations have been lifted and vaccines are becoming available, many food producers have resumed their business.
Zardozi clients are interested in a wide variety of sectors and Zardozi is ready to find the necessary training and to build capacity in whatever market women want to enter.
Recently the demand for cooking training has greatly increased since not only is there now increased demand but also, as a business, cooking requires less investment and allows women to do a lot of their work from home so that they can pursue their many family responsibilities as well as earning a living.
Clever women wanting to move into the food business are creating markets for themselves by going around their neighbourhoods motivating a variety of people such as students in dormitories, working-mothers, shopkeepers, and the staff working late in tuition centres and private schools to buy their ready-made food. Some clients work as individuals and others as groups, delivering food daily or against longer-term orders according to customer preference. Although so far their profits are small, they are hopeful that with the spring their businesses will expand as people get out more and their own skills improve.