Members’ News

December 2019

Casual Dining raises spirits – unveiling new drinks exhibitors for 2020 #

Four months out from Casual Dining 2020 (25-26 March, London ExCeL) and two of the show’s popular drinks pavilions are already sold out.  Boasting a dozen exhibitors each, the Artisan Spirits Lounge and The Taphouse will sample new innovations from an exciting mix of independent breweries and distilleries.
Making their show debut in the former are: Belgrove Rum, Faith & Sons Gin, Strawbar (eau de vie spirit distilled from organic Greek strawberries) and Tarsier Spirit (Southeast Asian dry gin).  In the latter: Binary Botanical (a lightly sparkling table beer aimed at ‘wine lovers’), Freestar, Lucky Saint, Orbit Beers, ShinDigger Craft Beer, Small Beer Brew Co, and The Five Points Brewing Co.
While The Vineyard – a new area for 2020, has been launched to sate the growing demand for wine at the show.  It’ll boast a raft of new companies (expect sparkling wine producers to feature strongly), with The Emissary Prosecco, and its vegan friendly Doc Treviso Brut 2017, having already snapped up the first stand.
Casual Dining’s event manager Eva Ellis says: “Offering a varied drinks menu – full of differentiation, innovative styles, flavours and blends, and distinctive ‘brand’ personality – is essential for any successful restaurant, pub and bar operator.  But where do you start?
“For example, according to some of the latest industry research this year: wine is the UK’s favourite alcoholic tipple, gin is the No.1 spirit, sparkling wine is booming, beer trumps wine in pubs, the premiumisation mega trend is helping drive alcohol sales, quality’s up but quantity’s down, all-the-while more British consumers generally are regularly choosing more low-and-no ABV options.
“That’s a lot of bases for casual dining operators to cover.  Fortunately, our exhibitors range from some of the world’s biggest-selling beer and cider brands to some of the industry’s newest start-ups – so, whatever your customers’ favourite drink there’s sure to be plenty to suit every taste here.”
Other new names announced today include Rémy Cointreau, LYRE'S Spirits, Soulfresh, Nirvana Brewery, Punchy Drinks, and Love Drinks (which represent Abelha Organic Cachaça, Bitter Truth, Brighton Gin, Einstök Icelandic craft beers, El Dorado demerara rums, Four Pillars Gin, Gosling’s Rum, Hernö Gin, Kamm & Sons British aperitif, and White Heron liqueurs).
Among the returning exhibitor highlights are Carlsberg, Mast-Jaegermeister UK, Diageo (whose portfolio includes J&B, Johnnie Walker, Windsor, Cîroc, Smirnoff, Captain Morgan, Baileys, Tanqueray, Shui Jing Fang, Ypióca, and Guinness), Molson Coors Brewing Company (Carling, Coors Light, Staropramen, Cobra, Doom Bar, Rekorderlig, Aspall, Bavaria and more), West Berkshire Brewery, Toschi UK, LA Brewery Kombucha, and Pedrino.
Conker Spirit, LUXLO Spirits, Sea Arch - Not Gin, Manchester Gin, Pinkster Gin, Pococello, Poetic License Distillery, and The Sweet Potato Spirit Company are back in the Artisan Spirits Lounge.  Big Smoke Brew Co, Big Drop Brewing Co, Celtic Marches Beverages, Hop Kettle Brewery, and Wild Beer Co complete The Taphouse’s line-up.
Soft drinks – particularly premium adult offerings – are always a big category at the show.  Coca-Cola European Partners, Britvic Soft Drinks, Fentimans, Nix & Kix, Karma Cola, Belvoir Fruit Farms, Dalston’s, Lemonaid, Pip Organic, Batch Organics, Long Tail Mixers, Lixir Tonic and many more – will be sampling everything from craft sodas, seltzers, fruit juices and cordials, to mixers, tonics, flavoured waters and smoothie kits.
The initial exhibitor list will be available online in early December.
Over 5,000 attendees will attend Casual Dining 2020 at ExCeL London over 25-26 March.
Visitors annually include senior buyers and decision makers from Admiral Taverns, Aramark, Azzurri Group, BaxterStorey, Benugo, Bill’s Restaurants, BrewDog, Carluccio's, Casual Dining Group, CH&Co Group, Charles Wells, Center Parcs, Côte Restaurants, Daniel Thwaites, Dishoom, Domino's Pizza Group, DoubleTree By Hilton, Ei Group, Elior UK, Flat Iron, Fuller's, Greene King, Hall & Woodhouse, Hard Rock Café, Harvester, ISS UK, Loungers, Marston’s, Mitchells & Butlers, Nando's, NWTC, Oakman Inns, Papa John's, PizzaExpress, Pizza Hut Restaurants UK, Pizza Pilgrims, Prezzo, Punch Taverns, Revolution Bars Group, Shepherd Neame, Sodexo, SSP, Stonegate Pub Company, TGI Fridays, The Restaurant Group, wagamama, YO! Sushi, Young's, and more.
“Casual Dining is the best show out there for pubs and restaurants that want to find innovative new products and inspiration,” says Ross Pike, chef director at Oakman Inns.
“Casual Dining continues to go from strength to strength.  Loved the products, the layout and the new venue.  See you next year,” says Paul Lewis, head of food and drink at Prezzo.
For further information and to register for a free trade ticket, please visit and use priority code CD10.

New UCC Coffee insight report 'The Future of Automation’ explores how technology is solving industry challenges from seed to sip #

UCC Coffee UK & Ireland has launched The Future of Automation - a report exploring how technology is shaping and solving industry challenges.

Over the last 12 months, the UK coffee shop market has seen a considerable 7.9% growth, with estimated sales of £10.1 billion (1). The report considers how automated processes are evolving to further accelerate this growth.

From creating more efficient farming processes to enhancing operators’ offerings with automated preparation methods and technology-driven customer experiences, automation is driving new innovations at each stage of the coffee journey.

Report highlights include:
- Trailblazing brands and industries: An overview of how automation is being embraced across other industries such as manufacturing, consumer home goods and hospitality
- Driving the coffee supply chain: How automated technologies are increasing efficiency in the supply chain
- Smarter tech, better service? A closer look into how automation is enhancing the future role of the barista
- What consumers think: New research into what consumers expect when drinking coffee out-of-home
- Coffee delivery: Will the Uber Eats and Deliveroo model work for future coffee delivery? An overview of current drone delivery innovations and forecasts for the future
- Telemetry: insights for the operator How data enables operators to make smart decisions for their entire coffee estate 

Phil Smith, head of category and insight, UCC Coffee UK & Ireland said: “As the entire world – from businesses to individuals – embraces automation, its power as a driving force for change is undeniable.

“Globally, the automation market is forecast to increase by 30% to reach £3.13 billion by 2025 (2). Our report considers how automation is changing the face of the coffee industry, solving widespread challenges from seed to sip. From growing to harvesting, through the supply chain, to preparation, payment, customer service and delivery. For the consumer, automation signals choice and reliability. Good value, quality and consistency can all be achieved without compromise, delivering a new age of coffee experience to all.”

The report follows the launch of UCC Coffee’s latest super automatic coffee machine, the Black&White4.

The Future of Automation Report is free to download on
1 Allegra World Coffee Portal 2019 Project Café UK, 2019
2 Robotic Process Automation (RPA) Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report, Research & Markets, 2019

Robin Mills appointed managing director for Compass Group UK & Ireland #

Compass announced the appointment of Robin Mills as managing director for Compass Group UK & Ireland, effective from 25th November 2019. Robin, formerly group chief people officer for Compass Group PLC, replaces Chris Garside.

Chris has spent ten years in the UK business, most recently as the UK & Ireland managing director since 2017. Having decided to further his career in an international role, Chris has taken a role within the Group International Clients team.

Prior to his role at Group, Robin was managing director for Compass Group UK & Ireland’s education business Chartwells, and previously held the role of HR Director for the UK & Ireland. Robin will report into Dominic Blakemore, group chief executive.

Commenting on the appointment, Dominic Blakemore said: “I’d like to thank Chris for the contribution he’s made to our business in the UK & Ireland over the last ten years. I’m delighted that Robin will be returning to the UK business to lead the UK & Ireland team on its growth journey.”

B&I Chef of the Year Success as Eurest Chef Team Shines #

Eurest and 14Forty, both part of Compass Group UK & Ireland’s B&I division, had five teams compete against each other to scoop the title of B&I Chef of the Year 2019. Head chef, Phil Jones and chef, David Millman from a Eurest site at a prestigious automotive company, were crowned winners after presenting two courses of outstanding plates of food.

Now in its second year, the competition had double the amount of entries compete in the regional heats to take one of the five places in the final, which was held at the Compass Group head office in Chertsey. Each team had 90 minutes to cook two courses and impress the judges with their presentation, taste profiles and dish complexity.
It was a tough decision for the judges – made up of Compass Group UK and Irelands’ Nick Vadis, culinary director; Morag Freathy, MD, B&I; Ryan Holmes, culinary director, B&I; Russell Butcher, development chef, Workplace and Laraine Kemp, people director, Operations – who had to pick the winning team. Along with a certificate and trophy, Phil and David will get to experience the wonderful Nordic delights Sweden has to offer on a Gothenburg food and spice tour – courtesy of competition sponsor, supplier and taste and flavour experts, Santa Maria.   

Deserved winners Phil Jones and David Millman wowed the judges with a starter of Thai Haddock and Brown Shrimp Bon-Bon with Sriracha Slaw and Salted Cucumber, and a main of Soy Glazed Crown Roast Duck Breast with Apple, Swede and Confit Duck Spring Roll served with Wilted Bok Choi and an Apple and Soy Reduction. They said of the win: “We’re over the moon, it’s been hard work getting to the final, but everything came together and we showed just what we could do when it really mattered. It’s all about cooking with a passion and being able to adapt a recipe to your surroundings! Our sights are set on Compass Chef of the Year finals in 2020 now.”

Morag Freathy, MD, Business & Industry at Compass Group UK & Ireland, said: “This is a fantastic platform to showcase that we’re culinary experts and that we are brilliant at what we do. We’ve seen some great skill, innovation, grit and determination on display, it’s been a real celebration of the talent we have. The standard this year has stepped up a gear which is testament to all our chefs across the B&I division at Compass Group UK & Ireland.

“It’s great to see all levels of chefs competing in our teams, from sous chefs to apprentice chefs, all working together to create such amazing plates of food. A big well done to everyone who competed, not only today in the final, but in the heats as well – it’s a big achievement for everyone who puts themselves up to compete.”

Compass Group joins forces with EAT to build a sustainable food future #

Compass Group, which serves 5.5 billion meals a year across 45 countries, announced a partnership with EAT, a non-profit organisation dedicated to transforming the global food system. Compass Group will work closely with EAT on a pilot project in its Nordic operations to track the carbon footprint of the food it serves, alongside a Compass Group project in Denmark which is focused on lowering the CO2 impact of the food it purchases in 2020 by 25%. The data collected will be used to analyse the food served by Compass Group, and where appropriate adjust purchasing and menus with healthy, lower-carbon alternatives such as increased plant-based options, to reflect the need for sustainable food systems. The pilot will begin in early 2020 and is expected to last the full year.
Compass Group’s partnership with EAT follows the publication in The Lancet, the leading international medical journal, of The EAT-Lancet commission’s report examining the need to feed a growing global population a healthy diet from sustainable food systems that will minimise damage to the planet and improve human health. The EAT-Lancet ‘Planetary Health Diet’ emphasises a biodiverse range of vegetables, nuts, seeds, and legumes, with sustainably-sourced fish, eggs, dairy, and meat. The pilot will focus on lowering the amount of meat served and increasing the serving of vegetables, as well as increasing the number of seasonal and sustainable recipes, and training chefs in preparing lower-carbon dishes.
Federico Tonetti, Compass Group safety and sustainability director, said: “As the largest player in the food service market we have a real opportunity to have an impact on our world. Our sustainability strategy is focused on taking targeted actions where we believe they will have the greatest impact, and working with clients and consumers to raise awareness and influence better nutritional choices. This exciting pilot with EAT allows us to test key elements from the EAT-Lancet report and use it to inform our business decisions.”
Dr. Gunhild Stordalen, executive chair and founder of EAT said: “Food is the dark horse in determining whether or not we will achieve the Sustainable Development Goals of the Paris Agreement. The EAT-Lancet report and other reports show that we are running out of time to transform the global food system in order to ensure enough healthy, affordable food for a growing population within safe environmental limits. Radical changes across the entire value chain and new collaboration are needed to make it a reality. That’s why we are thrilled to welcome Compass on board as a partner, to start translating the global EAT-Lancet targets into actionable targets for their business.”

Preventing losses in the contract catering sector through fraud and staff error #

According to current statistics from YouGov, hospitality staff turnover is at a record 30%, double the UK average. This has resulted in a greater risk than other industries of leaving teams inadequately short staffed and trained to handle takings or indeed falling victim to fraud and theft. Couple this with the fact restaurants, bars and cafés are particularly reliant upon cash takings and the risk of loss on the shop floor is considerable. So how come nobody wants to talk about it in hospitality? Here, Malcolm Muir, consultancy director at Venners, explains how a few simple tweaks to procedures can have a significant impact on a caterer’s bottom line, whilst also stopping profits being diverted away from the till.
It’s not a case of if a contract catering business will incur financial loss due to error or theft, it’s when. At Venners, we’ve completed thousands of observation audits, which note the details of around 100 rounds of drink sales on each occasion. Losses occurred in 100% of hospitality sites. The losses were due to a number of factors, including mistakes, poor revenue capture and theft. Indeed, over the last 12 months, we’ve already observed more than 10,000 drink transactions. Our findings uncovered significant revenue loss, with 39% attributable to theft but almost half (46%) caused by human error.
The most frequent type of loss is caused by general fraud. This can include food and drink consumed by staff on duty – not forgetting that many caterers rightly allow teams to help themselves during the course of a shift, however too often, amounts are not specified, which results in staff naturally taking more than the policy intended. Similarly, drinks and staff discounts can easily be passed to friends and family. Customer promotions can also be more of a hindrance than help, frequently causing server error and leading to lost profits. If caterers don’t adequately explain offers to staff, the misuse of promotions can mean the exercise backfires on the till.
Who is most at risk?
We’ve found wherever opportunities arise through flaws in procedures, theft will be swift to follow. For example, nightclubs provide an environment ripe for theft and error, due to the fast pace of the environment, lively guests and dark corners. Perhaps surprisingly, the hotel lounge service is just as susceptible. We found the table service provided in lounges often means staff ring in orders away from guests and prying eyes.
What can operators do?
Here are 10 simple steps operators can take to minimise risks:
1. Training is paramount to avoid server error. This should also apply when someone takes a leave of absence. A thorough handover should be undertaken to ensure nothing is missed. 

2. Don’t rely on receipts. Simply asking staff to ensure receipts are produced doesn’t always stop theft. Some members of staff don’t always print receipts and not every customer wants a piece of paper every time they’re served. 

3. Is the till visible to customers? This is an easy check to make. We have seen many instances of fraud occurring when a till display is broken, turned away from the customer or obscured by menus. 

4. Caterers need to start talking amongst themselves to learn what to look out for. There might be something - or indeed someone they weren’t aware of as a serial fraudster. 

5. Managers should talk to teams. Staff need to be made aware when poor results occur; and to understand that theft affects the whole business. 

6. Accurate records are important. Every till action, payment and shortage should be recorded. 

7. Check procedures regularly. Caterers should carry out site visits at odd times. Sunday afternoons can see large losses, attributable to a lack of management on-site and higher numbers of off-duty staff, resulting in families taking advantage of discounts. 

8. On the supplier side, caterers should conduct random spot-checks to scrutinise deliveries more closely. Staff will always say they check each delivery on arrival, but in practice, this is not the case. 

9. Show care for your staff by keeping them happy and motivated. This may not seem like an obvious way to curb losses, however, it’s a way of building loyalty and trust, which in turn could reduce theft, whilst increasing the likelihood of a whistle-blower calling time on fraudulent activity. 

10. Caterers should consider a regular external audit. A third-party review brings experience from multiple industries and types of business and doesn’t skirt issues that might “drop a friend in it”. Using an outsider removes personalities from the business and the tendency for internal reviewers to presume “he would never do that” or “she always checks that”. Presumptions can be wrong. It is impossible to know every staff member’s personal circumstances and pressures can cause people to act out of character. 

What happens when a problem is suspected?
If a caterer suspects they’ve become a victim of staff fraud or mistakes, they can use their business data to check for suspicious activity. Who has the most “No Sale” records? This can often indicate a member of staff with a high error rate and caterers should then ensure that extra training is provided. External assessors can also be brought in to check a suspicious situation. An outsider will turn a fresh eye on the business, conduct an impartial review and identify risk factors in procedures that have become commonplace. Caterers might also consider changing shift patterns or re-assigning tasks to highlight anomalies.
Case-study 1
One client asked Venners to audit three central London bars. Not because they suspected staff were acting maliciously but to prove to a doubting head office accountant that they weren’t. Venners conducted observation audits at the three sites over two nights. By the end of the week, of the eight staff who had been serving at the bars, seven had left the business.
Our audit identified that the employees removed 20% of the takings over the bar in a single evening. They achieved this by under-ringing the till as part of an agreement between them, with the cash shared at the end of the night. They also deployed their vast experience of bar work to create stock surplus by manipulating the service of post mix and cocktails to hide the cash they were extracting.
Case-study 2
An operator had an extremely busy bar but consistently poor results. The bar was so busy, the on-site management said they didn’t know where to look for the cause. Venners began by looking at the till information without the site staff’s awareness. This review highlighted unusual transactions by the manager himself. Late at night, he corrected orders off the till and refunded them to cash or his own credit card.
Having trusted the manager implicitly for 10 years, the operator was reluctant to accept the evidence. However, when the manager was challenged with the evidence, he admitted stealing tens of thousands of pounds over 18 months after falling into gambling debts and addiction. This highlights the importance of removing the personal relationship from the equation and allowing an external review to take place - ensuring no preconceptions of the site or the staff. It also underpins the idea that operators cannot fully know what is taking place in the life of each individual team member and to be open to the possibility that all is not always what it seems, however uncomfortable that might feel.

For more information, please visit

Gather & Gather’s Primarket Café launches at Primark Edinburgh #

Gather & Gather, part of CH&CO, has opened a second Primarket Café – Primark’s instore café concept – at the store on Princes Street, Edinburgh to fuel shoppers through the busy festive period and beyond. 

The 60+-cover café enhances the customer experience in the Primark Edinburgh store which has five floors of amazing fashion at amazing prices.

The extensive menu caters for adults and children and a range of dietary requirements. Visitors can choose from speciality coffees, frappes, iced teas and soft drinks, as well as a variety of hot and cold snacks, including breakfast pots, pitta pizzas, sandwiches and salads, and a selection of ‘hotties’, such as croque monsieur, toasties and paninis.

This will also be the first time the Primarket Café menu will feature an afternoon tea offering, complete with scones, finger sandwiches and cakes with prices starting at £7.00. For Christmas, the menu has been given a seasonal twist, serving winter spice hot chocolate, The Nutcracker latte, a turkey and cranberry sandwich and festive bakes.

Gather & Gather’s and Primark’s joint focus on sustainability is at the heart of the Primarket Café concept with no plastics straws, reduced use of single use plastics and only compostable take away cups available at the site. Customers will be served Gather & Gather’s own blend of quality coffee, Camino, which uses only ethically-sourced beans, and those bringing their own reusable cup will receive a discount of 10p.

Allister Richards, managing director, Gather & Gather, said: “We’re thrilled to have launched Primarket at Primark Edinburgh. It’s proven a very popular destination for the store’s Christmas shoppers. The menu currently has a festive theme, but we look forward to developing the concept into 2020 with great-quality options that appeal to the diverse demographic and maximise the fantastic location and magnificent views the site offers. This is the second Gather & Gather operated Primarket Café to open this year and we look forward to expanding the concept further, in partnership with Primark, with a continued focus on quality and sustainability.” 

Primark’s director of new business development, Tim Kelly said: “We are hugely excited to have launched our Primarket Café, Edinburgh and look forward to a continued partnership with Gather & Gather.”

Essential Cuisine buoyed by another year of record sales #

Essential Cuisine has yet again posted record YOY sales figures. The British manufacturer of stocks and sauces is gearing up for 2020 and beyond with considerable investment in its Cheshire-based operations to increase capacity, lower emissions and improve efficiencies across the board. 
The landmark 12 months comes in the wake of a May 2018 acquisition by Solina, a leading European producer of savoury ingredients.
At the time of the sale, Essential Cuisine pledged to retain the values that had made the business a success over the years, with a continued passion for developing high quality foodservice ingredients and supporting the industry with a dedication to chefs and working kitchens, retaining and expanding its full product portfolio and customer base. Eighteen months on and the evidence is clear for all to see. The year began with a highly effective brand refresh, including new strapline; our passion, your creation – a dual tribute to the industry it loves to serve, and the passionate people and class-leading products that have come to define the brand.  
Later in 2019, the total removal of gluten from its award-winning range of products, allied to the introduction of several ‘premium instant’ lines, saw the company make even greater strides into the public sector. This was achieved while retaining and developing highly successful profit sector business and bespoke manufacturing operations. 
Essential Cuisine head of marketing, Ben Forbes comments: “2019 has been a really successful year for Essential Cuisine in terms of financial results and new customer wins and, following on as they do from a great period of change for the company, are testament to the hard work from our incredible and passionate team. With 2020 looming, we’re certainly not going to rest on our laurels; our core business focus is on innovation – both in products and processes. Having invested in infrastructure changes that will help us grow further and future proof the business, we move forward with great excitement and optimism.”  

United Kingdom of condiments: Bestway Wholesale reveals the nation’s favourites for the Sunday roast #

As temperatures drop and the legendary Sunday roast is firmly back on the menu, Bestway Wholesale reveals the nation’s favourite condiments for the Great British roast.

A long-standing tradition, the roast dinner has a special place in the nation’s hearts. New research has ranked the pub roast the sixth most unmissable experience for visitors (1), with pub lunch roasts growing their share from 11% to 12.1% since Q2 2018 (2).

To understand each region’s take on the Great British roast, Bestway explored the nation’s online conversations using social listening tool Delve Insights, and analysed sales data from its nationwide depots over the past 12 months.

So, what are the regional condiment champions?

- Yorkshire and the North East are swimming in gravy, as the biggest consumers in the country. Bisto is their favourite brand, buying over six times the amount Southerners do (who consume the least of all regions). This part of the country also buys the most horseradish.

- Londoners and the Midlands like to turn up the heat with English mustard (Colman’s of course!), buying over nine times more than the North West. Scotland is the biggest champion of the milder mustards. From wholegrain to French and Dijon, Scotland’s serving up more than any other region.

- Meanwhile in the North West, mint sauce tops the list over all other traditional Sunday sauces.On social media, the top three most talked about condiments were gravy (dominating 62% of the condiment conversation), mustard (16%) and apple sauce (12%).

David Livingstone, head of catering at Bestway Wholesale said: “The Sunday roast is such a British staple. The meat and two veg is a given but, when it comes to condiments, we’ve seen that tastes between regions can differ greatly with each part of the country championing a different accompaniment.

“Lashings of gravy is a basic requirement but it’s no longer a case of pairing sauces with a particular meat. British consumers like to mix it up - mint sauce with chicken, lamb and mustard, and so on. There’s no straightforward couplings anymore so it’s important pubs, restaurants and bars always provide a wide variety of options and don’t pigeonhole their customers based on the most popular centre of plate.”

The nation is also mixing it up with roast and drink pairings. Surprisingly, beer is the most talked about drink pairing for roast dinners online (instead of wine), dominating a significant 79% of the conversation.

1 Ultimate United Kingdom Travelist, Lonely Planet, 2019
2 MCA Insight Pub Brand Monitor Q2 May 2019

CESA restates commitment to fight for free trade #

As political deadlock clears, CESA will continue to fight for the interests of the foodservice equipment industry
The UK’s election on 12 December saw the Conservatives win a resounding majority largely on their promise to “Get Brexit Done”. This will almost certainly enable the new administration to bring back the Withdrawal Arrangement Bill before Christmas and get it passed unamended, allowing Britain to leave the European Union and begin formal negotiations on the future relationship of the United Kingdom and the EU.
Throughout the last three years CESA, the Catering Equipment Suppliers Association, has been the main advocate for the interests of all foodservice equipment suppliers, manufacturers, importers, dealers and distributors. As the moment of political deadlock appears to be passing, this work will be focussed on holding to the new government to account.
“Since the referendum we’ve been working hard to prepare the Brexit groundwork for our industry,” says chief executive of CESA Keith Warren. “We will be active in representing our member’s interests at the trade talks.  One vital area is the campaign for no regulatory divergence, as this would increase the cost of manufacturing and potentially make the UK a dumping ground for non-compliant equipment.
“All of our members want tariff free trade to remain, as anything else will increase prices, leading to negative impacts on the market.”
Moving forwards, Keith is keen to reassure members. “EFCEM (the European Federation of Catering Equipment Manufacturers) will continue to represent us in European policy developments, ensuring that even if the UK doesn’t have a seat at the EU table, our sector’s voice continues to be heard.  EFCEM has a strong record of success in these discussions”
With a clearer path forward now emerging Keith remains cautiously optimistic. “This result gives the country certainty and a clarity of purpose. Hopefully this will eventually lead to increased investment, and consumer confidence that will benefit the whole supply chain.”

​All you need to know about light equipment and tableware #

CESA launches new LET professional training initiative
CESA has launched a new training initiative designed to give a comprehensive understanding of light equipment and tableware. The Light Equipment and Tableware Professional (LETP) programme is aimed at LET suppliers and manufacturers as well as foodservice operators - the people who manufacture, import, distribute, sell, market or use light equipment and tableware.  It was put together with the guidance and endorsement of CESA, Westminster Kingsway College and the Craft Guild of Chefs. 
LETP builds on CESA’s established CFSP programme, and looks specifically at the history, the creation, development and future of LET products used throughout the hospitality industry.  “It’s designed to enhance, expand and validate the professionalism of those taking the course,” says John Whitehouse, chair of CESA.  “Candidates taking the programme may already be working in LET, and will use it to demonstrate their expertise, or they will be looking to become more involved in this part of the industry.” 
The first LETP course runs on Tuesday 24 and Wednesday 25 March 2020, at the CESA offices in Rotherwick House, London, E1W 1YZ. 
LETP candidates learn through 14 modules, each of which is based on a 15 minute presentation that is sent to them, four per week over four weeks.  The modules cover areas such as ‘materials, shapes and colours’, ‘glassware’, ‘patisserie and bakery’ and ‘what the future looks like’.  There’s then a full day seminar, including interactive group sessions, followed by an examination. 
The Light Equipment and Tableware Professional course costs £600+VAT for members of CESA, CEDA and FCSI, and for the Craft Guild of Chefs and Westminster Kingsway College, who support the programme. For others the cost is £865+VAT. Courses will run at regular intervals during the year, at venues around the UK.  The first LETP course is already filling up, so anyone interested should book their place as soon as possible.   For more information contact CESA. 

Raising the bar at Goodison Park #

100% of all plastic pint glasses served by Sodexo at Goodison Park are now reusable.

The new reusable plastic cups will save an estimated 75,000 single-use plastic cups being used across a season at Everton’s ground.

Designated recycling points have been installed on the concourse for supporters to place their cups when used, before they are washed and returned to be used again.

The cups can be reused up to 100 times.

 Jo Wetherill, Sodexo catering services director at Goodison Park, said: “Reducing waste is one of our key priorities so when Everton asked us for a solution to help drive down plastic waste we were more than happy to use our expertise to find an answer.

“These reusable cups will make a huge difference to the amount of plastic used at Goodison Park and make our work even greener.”

The new cups form part of a wider campaign launched by the club and Everton in the Community aimed at increasing environmental awareness and reducing the clubs carbon footprint.

Alix Craig, stadium development and project manager, said: “The initiative is a key part of our environmental awareness campaign, ‘Everton for Change’, and it has been great to see the Club and Sodexo team up to launch this scheme. Reusable cups will make a huge difference to the amount of single-use plastic used at Goodison Park and help us achieve our environmental goals.”

Sodexo awarded TfL contract for food services #

Sodexo announced that is has won the new four-year contract to provide food services at 26 Transport for London (TfL) sites across the London Underground network.

Sodexo, which has delivered services to TfL for more than 25 years, was awarded the new food services contract following a competitive tender. The new contract includes the management of staff restaurants, out of hours service requests at 26 locations for TfL’s London Underground consumers.
Sodexo will provide a range of innovative solutions to drive health and wellbeing based on customer insight, high street trends, and London-centric eating habits.

Paul Anstey, CEO Government & Agencies, Sodexo UK & Ireland said: “Our partnership with TfL is very important to us. We have been delivering food services for their consumers for 25 years and we are proud to continue providing that service for them. We are looking forward to continuing to drive innovation in the catering services we deliver and to support their strategy to keep the city moving.”

EMW has added three new members to its growing London office #

James Davis, Clare Reed and Natalie Hayes-Green join the Dispute Resolution team

EMW has appointed three new members to its expanding London office, including two Principals and one Solicitor.

James Davis and Clare Reed join as Principals, and Natalie Hayes-Green as Solicitor.

James Davis, previously a Partner at Hamilton Downing Quinn LLP, has over 25 years of experience working on a broad range of commercial contentious matters. In particular James specialises in contractual and property related disputes where he works with high net worth individuals and small and medium sized businesses.

Clare Reed, previously a Partner at Nicholas & Co Solicitors, specialises in high valued, complex claims related to construction, property and commercial matters. Clare also has substantial experience handling complex financial services claims. She handled the landmark case of Timothy Taylor Ltd v Mayfair House Corporation [2016] and was also seconded to the Professional Indemnity claims team at Mitsui Sumitomo Insurance.

Natalie Hayes-Green was previously a property litigation Solicitor at Tees Law. She has several years of experience in commercial disputes and residential and commercial property litigation.

Mark Rondel, Principal and head of the Dispute Resolution team at EMW comments: “We are very excited to announce this further enhancement of our London Dispute Resolution team. These new appointments come as part of our strategic growth plans and with the decades of experience we have acquired, will mean a significant increase in the level of service we are able to provide to clients in our key practice areas.”

Elior launches Foodsmiths brand to drive growth in attractions, venues and stadia market #

Elior UK is bringing together all its services for owners and operators of attractions, venues, events and stadia under its Foodsmiths brand.

Foodsmiths has been designed to accelerate Elior’s expansion in a sector it believes will benefit from greater innovation in catering and hospitality.

Kenny Finlayson, Elior UK managing director and head of the Foodsmiths brand, says: “Under the Foodsmiths portfolio, our focus is on delivering food and service formats that maximise the quality of the customer experience and enhance the clients’ brand reputation and commercial returns.

“Foodsmiths gives us the platform for doing what we’ve done successfully in other sectors of our business – joining up the very best value adding thinking and methods from right across Elior, in the UK and internationally, to create a great and constantly improving customer experience”.

The transfer of best practice between Foodsmiths teams, and strongly driven shared new offer development, value -adding service technologies and insights into food trends and customer attitudes will be a central platform in the new brand.

At the heart of the Foodsmiths is the promise of handcrafted, delicious, healthy, imaginative food. Made with fresh ingredients, from sustainable sources, cooked and prepared freshly on site, then served by staff trained to create a service ethos of warmth and professionalism.

Elior has defined Craft, Quality and Provenance as the three key principles in a code of practice that will unify all the services offered in the Foodsmiths portfolio.

Given the nature of this sector the brand will not always be visible on site, since in most cases services are delivered under the client’s bespoke own brand and identity. Elior will however, be rolling out a Foodsmiths branded café and restaurant format for clients who want a separate food service identity on site.

More on Foodsmiths can be found here:

Elior puts vegan indulgence front and centre with new sweet and savoury concepts #

Elior UK has tapped into a new trend within one of the most talked about diets: vegan indulgence. Proving extravagance has a place in the vegan diet, its new vegan menus include the City Bakes Co. ‘100% Vegan’ range of tempting cakes and bakes, the ‘vGood’ fish and chip shop offering and the sizzling Urban Rajah ‘Chilla Series’.

Responding to the growing trend of plant-based diets, the concepts are designed for vegans, vegetarians, flexitarians and those who want to try something different.

Mark Crowe, head of menu management at Elior UK said: “By 2025, vegans and vegetarians will make up 25% of the UK population, but 80% of vegans say they can’t find suitable food options on-the-go. What’s more, 39% of Brits describe vegan meals as ‘boring’.1 Our new concepts respond to this clear gap in the market for fun, on-the-go vegan dishes, and challenge peoples’ expectations of vegan food.

“Although the vegan diet is renowned for its health benefits, environmental reasons are a huge factor for consumers too, and people are still looking for ways to indulge while sticking to a vegan diet. Rivalling the high street, our new concepts have a wide appeal – with the rise of flexitarianism even non-vegans are keen to discover new alternatives and plant-based flavour combinations.” 

The City Bakes Co. 100% Vegan range includes chocolate and pecan brownies, peanut butter and ginger cookies, mini pumpkin and cinnamon sugar doughnuts, zesty spirulina and raspberry muffins, chocolate chip cookies and lemon drizzle loaf cake.

Perfect for universities and B&I, the vGood menu includes vegan ‘fish’ and chips (recreating a flaky fish texture with banana blossom), vegan ‘fried chicken’ (a crispy fried chicken alternative made with seitan) and vegan burgers (using seitan as a rich, moreish meat alternative).

Also serving a slice of winter warming vegan indulgence fit for a Rajah, The Chilla Series consists of chickpea flour chilla pancakes, zingy Bangalorean lemon rice, vegan curries, chaat sides, toppers, chutneys and raita. For an extra level of indulgence, rich cinnamon milk and strawberry chocolate lassi are also on the menu.

Elior’s collections of vegan treats are available across a range of its sites including universities, B&I, concessions and events.

1 The Vegan Society, 2019