Members’ News

November 2020

Insights on Hospitality - Fourth's October Report #

As England goes into a second lockdown, Fourth have once more collated insights in partnership with Wireless Social to share a comprehensive report exploring the current state of the hospitality industry.
The latest study indicates that the number of job leavers continues to significantly outweigh the number of new starters, a trend seen throughout August and September, since the industry began reopening following the first lockdown.
To explore the findings in more, click here to download the report. 

Compass Group UK and Ireland Celebrates Commitment to Real Living Wage #

Compass Group UK and Ireland is delighted to announce it has been awarded Recognised Service Provider status by the Living Wage Foundation. The announcement will see the UK and London Living Wage paid to directly employed staff and subcontracted employees on contracts where the client chooses to implement the Living Wage. Compass joins over 140 Recognised Service Providers championing the real Living Wage.

The real Living Wage is £9.50 in the UK and £10.85 in London. Both rates are significantly higher than the government minimum for over 25s, which currently stands at £8.72 per hour.

Compass is the UK’s largest food and support services provider, employing tens of thousands of frontline employees within schools, colleges, universities, hospitals and care homes, behind the scenes at sports and leisure events, as well as providing catering and cleaning in offices, boardrooms and workplaces as diverse as oil rigs and military bases. As a Recognised Service Provider, Compass is showing its dedication to raising employer standards in the hospitality industry by offering a Living Wage bid alongside every market rate submission to all prospective and current clients, helping to advocate for a Living Wage throughout their network.
The real Living Wage is the only rate calculated according to the costs of living. It provides a voluntary benchmark for employers that wish to ensure their staff earn a wage they can live on, not just the government minimum. Since 2011 the Living Wage movement has delivered a pay rise to over 240,000 people and put over £1 billion extra into the pockets of low paid workers.

Robin Mills, Managing Director, Compass Group UK and Ireland commented: “As a people business, it was important for Compass Group UK and Ireland to work with the Living Wage Foundation to become a recognised service provider. The COVID-19 pandemic has shone a light on all key workers and the important role they play to support our public services and our everyday lives. As a sector that has been significantly impacted, we want to build a better business for our people, clients and customers.

“We have pledged to pay all our direct workers the real Living Wage and will advocate with clients and potential clients to highlight the positive difference a real Living Wage makes. By tackling low pay head on, together we can make a real difference to the lives of our people and in turn their families

Laura Gardiner, Director, Living Wage Foundation said: “We’re delighted that Compass Group UK and Ireland has joined the Living Wage movement and network of responsible employers across the UK who voluntarily commit to go further than the government minimum to make sure staff earn enough to live on. As we face unprecedented new difficulties in our everyday lives, having the extra income from the real Living Wage will help workers and their families better navigate these uncertain times.

“Compass’s commitment to advancing the Living Wage through their own organisation and those of their clients places them amongst the movement’s foremost champions. Their leadership as a Recognised Service Provider showcases their belief that paying the real Living Wage is the mark of a responsible employer

Heinz 'Click & Chips' Apps are working hard to save British Fish and Chip Shops #

Following the Government's recent announcement regarding a second national lockdown, it is more important than ever for fish and chip shops to adapt to the current climate and ensure they are able to operate through take-away and delivery.
Since launching its “Click & Chips” campaign in September, Heinz has so far helped British chip shops to take over 4,500 orders generating £48,000 worth of revenue.
Heinz teamed up with fish and chip shops up and down the country to launch a series of brand-new apps to celebrate the great British chippie and help save businesses from closure. There are now 30 “Click & Chips” apps actively taking orders with over 80,000 orders made, enabling chip shops to have their very own service where customers can pre-order from their smartphones.
The campaign set out to help get Britain’s chip shops back on their feet after the initial lockdown earlier this year, which saw a staggering 80% close.  At the beginning of lockdown one of the biggest issues facing chip shops was a lack of infrastructure to launch delivery and click and collect services. With more uncertainty on the horizon, the campaign will continue to help to support chip shops during these challenging times.
Claire Traynor, Head of Foodservice at Heinz, says: “Fish suppers from the local chippy are a much-loved British institution - especially when paired with a dollop of Heinz sauce. But chippies, like many of us, haven’t had it easy this year. So, here at Heinz, we wanted to do something to help get them back on their feet.”
“By working together with fish and chip shop owners across the UK we’ve been delighted to help them start their own apps in the hope it encourages people to order directly from their favorite chippy and support them through these uncertain times.

All apps are free to download on Apple and Android.
For more information and a full list of participating stores visit

FEA announces Light Equipment and Tableware Awards 2020 #

Brakes won a brace of trophies in the FEA’s Light Equipment and Tableware (LET) 2020 awards – while Alliance was named Distributor of the Year for the fourth time in a row. 
The awards are normally announced at the annual LET Forum – but the 2020 event was a victim of the Covid 19 pandemic.  However, FEA’s light equipment and tableware group still went ahead with the voting for the awards and the winners have just been announced. 
The Distributor Cup, for the Distributor of the Year, was won by Alliance Disposables.  Steve Goodliff, chair of the FEA’s LET Group, commented, “To win for a fourth year in a row is remarkable.  It absolutely underlines Alliance’s commitment to the industry.  They are very active when it comes to vital areas such as promoting a wide range of products and being receptive to new ideas.” 
On behalf of Alliance, general manager Ryan Edge said, “I’m really delighted that Alliance have won the cup once again.  It’s disappointing that the 2020 Forum had to be cancelled – but now we can look forward to the 2021 event.”
Sales Professional of the Year, which recognises the individual who has contributed most to the sales of light equipment and tableware, was won by Jodie Musgrove of Brakes Catering Equipment.  “Jodie has had a great year, adding value for her customers and successfully developing LET sales in a challenging market,” said Goodliff. 
Jodie Musgrove said, “A big thank you to everyone who voted for me.  In normal circumstances we all really enjoy the LET Forum and I look forward next year’s!  It’s definitely the most useful and informative event we have in the calendar.
The LET awards’ top honour, the Donald Bird Award, is given to an individual who has shown dedication and commitment to the industry, and who has a reputation for ‘going the extra mile’.  The 2020 award went to Brian Honeyford, purchasing manager at Brakes Catering Equipment.  “I’m personally delighted for Brian, a very worthy winner,” said Goodliff.  “In a normal year the award would be presented in front of around a hundred delegates at the LET Forum Dinner, and I know he would have been a very, very popular choice.” 
Brian Honeyford said, “Like Jodie, I’d like to say a big thank you – I feel very honoured to have received the award.  FEA is a great organisation and I’ve always said the Light Equipment and Tableware Forum is one of the best events the industry puts on.  Thank you again and keep up the good work!” 
The LET Forum is the (usually) annual event where manufacturers, suppliers and distributors meet to discuss and get hands-on experience of the latest light equipment and tableware product ideas and concepts.   FEA is putting plans in place to run the LET Forum next year, so save the dates: 11th and 12th May 2021.  For information and to be added to the LET Forum database to receive early news, email 
The Foodservice Equipment Association (FEA) is the independent, authoritative voice of the foodservice equipment industry, representing nearly 200 companies who supply, service and maintain all types of commercial catering equipment - from utensils to full kitchen schemes.  For more information on FEA visit 

The show must go on: Elior UK CEO celebrates final year as Women of the Year chair with virtual afternoon tea for 400 awards attendeesT #

Leading contract caterer Elior UK has toasted CEO Catherine Roe’s final year as chair of Women of the Year by supplying afternoon tea boxes to almost 400 virtual awards attendees. 
Roe, who took up the chair position in 2018, this year addressed the audience of the 2020 Women of the Year awards virtually, owing to current lockdown restrictions. Despite the challenges, the Elior Foodsmiths team produced 378 afternoon tea boxes so the awards ‘lunch’ could still go ahead.
Elior created a bespoke afternoon tea box for guests including Baroness Floella Benjamin DBE, actress and television presenter; DJ Edith Bowman and Dame Esther Rantzen DBE, journalist and presenter.
Roe and the guests enjoyed a selection of goodies including mature cheddar cheese straws, glazed fruit scones and double chocolate brownie cake along with a selection of Brew Tea infusions and Thomas & Scott Organic Prosecco.
Women of the Year aims to celebrate the achievements of women of all backgrounds and this year, honours were given to women from fields including health, tech and music.
It has been a privilege to chair this fantastic organisation that seeks out and honours exceptional women in every walk of life, some of whom will never have had the recognition for their achievements otherwise” said Elior UK CEO Catherine Roe.
As a national initiative, Women of the Year has championed women’s achievements for more than 60 years. The 2020 event saw Roe pass on the chair position to Lady Louise Fitzroy.
I have thoroughly enjoyed being Women of the Year Chair, but sadly my three-year term has come to an end. I’m handing over to the wonderful Lady Louise Fitzroy who is utterly passionate about the organisation, and has a unique family connection to it, as she’s the granddaughter of our founder, Lady Tony Lothian,” finished Roe. 

Bidfood launches new home delivery service platform, ‘Bidfood at home’ #

Last week, saw the national roll out of Bidfood at home, the new consumer shopping platform from Bidfood, one of the UK’s leading foodservice providers.
Going live across the UK on Wednesday (11th November 2020), the click + collect and home delivery service  will extend its customer base beyond the hospitality industry, meaning access to over 3,000 lines of Bidfood’s extensive range of food, drinks and non-food supplies to the public.

In March, Bidfood quickly pivoted from only providing services to businesses, to extend its offering to the general public, who were struggling to access their usual food shops due to the pandemic. Through this initiative and supporting the government with the National Shield Pack Programme, a valued partnership with thousands of British home customers was born. Following its success Bidfood has evolved its offer, launching a permanent, dedicated home shopping platform which enables customers to choose from a huge range of food and drink products, previously only available to the trade.

Discussing the new platform, Ian Moore, Finance, Strategy & Digital Director, at Bidfood UK, said: “Our new website combines our catering expertise with our digital flair and delivers a creative solution tailored towards these audiences, now allowing everyone in the country to access our extensive range.”

As shopping habits continue to dramatically change the new platform will support shoppers around the UK to get the supplies their family need direct to their homes. From classic cupboard staples and household brands; to a wide range of both frozen and fresh meats; seasonal ranges, product innovation, a dedicated ‘wine cellar’ with a wide range of drinks and spirits and even face masks, visors and sanitisers.

In time for the festive season, the foodservice providers Christmas range will now be available for shoppers exclusively through Bidfood and will not be available in the shops - so if a vegan and gluten free decadent mirrored chocolate truffle torte, a creamy goat’s cheese Christmas soufflé or a bacon wrapped turkey paupiette with Cumberland, cranberry and apricot stuffing tantalises the taste buds of consumers, the full range will now be available to order directly to their door.

Bidfood at home will be available for home delivery or click and collect from depots nationwide and for the remainder of 2020 customers will be offered free home delivery slots, with a two-hour window (conditions apply). The new website will host recipes, advice and tips from home experts, guest chefs and nutritional specialists, as well as keeping shoppers updated on the latest deals and offers.
To shop the range visit 

Casual Dining postponed until September 2021 #

Casual Dining to run alongside lunch! and Commercial Kitchen trade shows next year

Diversified Communications UK, the organiser of the Casual Dining trade show, has confirmed the show has sadly been postponed from next March due to the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and government restrictions. The UK’s only event dedicated to the casual dining sector (multisite and independent restaurants, pubs and bars) will now take place on 23-24 September 2021 at ExCeL London.

In better news for the hospitality industry, this means that Casual Dining will run at the same time as its award-winning sister show lunch! (the definitive event for cafes, coffee shops and food-to-go) and the much-anticipated London debut of Commercial Kitchen (the essential event for kitchen innovations) next year.

The magnitude and unprecedented scale of the Covid-19 outbreak and the subsequent government restrictions have affected the lives and livelihoods of people and businesses around the world. The hospitality sector in the UK has been especially badly hit, despite a lack of evidence of their role in transmission. While the UK’s strict lockdown measures are expected to ease over the coming months, social distancing and restrictions on mass gatherings look to remain in force for March 2021. Notably, many Casual Dining exhibitors and visitors are among the millions of people currently furloughed, which makes it even harder for firms to plan their stands and product launches at this time.

Eva Ellis, event manager for Casual Dining says: “Like all businesses, we have been closely following the rapidly changing developments during these difficult times. While we were hopeful that the current tough measures on restricted social interaction would be lifted by March, there are still too many questions surrounding hotels, travel, social distancing, and individual company policies, to make it viable to run Casual Dining in March 2021. Clearly, the best, safest and most responsible option for everyone involved is to wait and host an even better show in September 2021 alongside lunch! and Commercial Kitchen. We believe this model will give all our valued exhibitors and buyers even more opportunities to do business, in an even safer environment, when they need it most.”

“The success as well as the safety of our exhibitors, visitors, speakers and partners has always been our priority and we are pleased that everyone is getting behind this tough but necessary decision. The good news is that most of the event planning is already in place, and we go into 2021 with an incredible amount of good will and encouragement. The team would like to thank the whole community for their support. We look forward to working together to ensure that it continues to be the celebration and gathering the hospitality industry deserves – and can be proud of.

Casual Dining, lunch! and Commercial Kitchen will take place on 23-24 September 2021 at ExCeL London. Although the three shows will maintain separate identities and focus, buyers and exhibitors will benefit from a boost in seeing an even greater range of products and customers.

Chris Brazier, group event director for the shows, adds: “All three shows focus on innovation and inspiration for hospitality operators. There is a great potential for collaboration and there is certainly more of a crossover of attendees than ever before as innovative and resilient brands pivot to become multichannel operators in testing times. We are thrilled to offer this strategic co-locate and feel that all three events will benefit hugely from this move. While all three will remain separate shows, they will in effect create one much larger hospitality event for the industry at the time that it needs it most.”

Casual Dining, two-time winner of Best UK Trade Show, was created with industry leaders to provide the focal point for the sector eight years ago. It enjoys unrivalled support from the biggest buyers and decision makers from multisite restaurants, pubs and bars, who have rallied behind their industry show:

Martin Wolstencroft, CEO of ARC Inspirations, comments that he is “really looking forward to the Casual Dining show 2021 to get the juices flowing again!

There’s never been a more important time to support each other and our industry show,” says James Spragg, CEO of the Big Table Group (formerly CDG).

Mark Teed, head of food at Star Pubs & Bars, is also looking forward to getting back to the show: “After turbulent times, Casual Dining 2021 will be the place to share new ideas, pursue new opportunities and celebrate new game changers in our industry.

We need to get together, find innovation and support each other more than ever. See you at Casual Dining 2021,” says Steven Mangleshot, executive chef at wagamama.

This is echoed by Steve Holmes, CEO of Azzurri Group (ASK Italian, Zizzi, Coco Di Mama) who says, “we’re looking forward to the most important Casual Dining show yet in 2021.”

For more information, please visit and

FEA publishes Guide to Leasing specifically for foodservice equipment #

FEA publishes Guide to Leasing
Guide explains advantages and benefits of finance packages
Covid-19 has put much of the foodservice industry put into severe economic distress.  However, operators still have to invest in equipment – and leasing is proving to be an increasingly popular way to spread the cost of the investment.  It can also provide several other benefits.  However, some caterers are struggling to find basic information, or they are unsure about how leasing works.  That’s why FEA has put together a Guide to Leasing, which looks specifically at leasing foodservice equipment and is available to download for free from the FEA website. 
The Guide looks at the benefits of leasing and considers some of the alternative finance options, such as hire purchase.  A ‘frequently asked questions’ section covers a variety of areas, such as VAT and tax benefits.  It also talks about what to look for in the small print, to avoid any issues. 
“When times are tough, finding the cash for a new commercial fridge, oven, dishwasher or other professional appliance can be tricky,” says Steve Hobbs, chair of FEA.  “This is where alternative finance options, such as leasing, come into their own.  In fact, the Covid-19 crisis has led to the development of increasingly flexible finance packages, notably with features like low-start payments or even payment holidays, especially at the beginning of the arrangement, designed to give the operator a leg up to help build business. 
“The FEA Guide to Leasing gives operators the information they need to know.” 
Alternative finance options also help operators overcome budget restrictions that otherwise might prevent them from buying the best equipment.  Why invest in the best equipment anyway?  If something needs replacing, why not buy a cheap substitute, or even go second hand?  Because modern, quality equipment is going to make economic sense not only in the long term, but also in the short and medium term, too.  The latest model will be more energy efficient, so it will have lower running costs, which will save money, from day one.  It’ll improve productivity, so operators will be able to cook more, wash more, store more and so on – again, from day one.  Because it will save time, staff will be able to get on with other tasks.  It will probably be more compact than an older model, so it’ll save space, too.  Plus, a quality appliance will last longer than a cheaper version. 
“Investing in good quality equipment is the best way to enhance your business,” says Hobbs.  “Leasing, and other alternative finance options, are a great way to benefit from the latest models – in fact, with many leasing arrangements, you can upgrade equipment during the lease to a newer model, to help you stay ahead.”
The FEA Guide to Leasing is available to download from the news section of the FEA website.  
The Foodservice Equipment Association (FEA) is the independent, authoritative voice of the foodservice equipment industry, representing nearly 200 companies who supply, service and maintain all types of commercial catering equipment - from utensils to full kitchen schemes.  For more information on FEA visit 

Tobun named as top 100 most influential black Britons #

Tevin Tobun, CEO of GV Group (Gate Ventures), has been named as one of the 100 most influential Black Britons for the third time.

Named alongside the likes of Formula one driver Lewis Hamilton, footballer Marcus Rashford, actor Michaela Coel, and Windrush lawyer, Jacqueline McKenzie, Tobun is the only person from the hospitality sector to be named in The Powerlist 2021.

His business, GV Group, is a multi-sector company focusing on food logistics within the education, social, healthcare, business & industry and retail sectors.

This year, he launched The Tobun Foundation, an organisation aiming to offer educational support to young people from disadvantaged backgrounds.

Alongside this, Tobun is currently a council member at The Open University, was on the board of Middlesex University, and is a lifetime patron of hospital charity Springboard. He is also chair of Inspirational You, which provides guidance to people of BAME background starting out in business through a range of initiatives, such as work experience, mentoring and business workshops.

The ‘Powerlist’, an annual publication first published in 2007 in a bid to provide professional role models for young people of African and African Caribbean heritage, has become one of the UK’s most prestigious networks – bringing together leading figures from the business, political, sports and entertainment worlds.

The publication is shared with schools, universities and corporations looking to inspire and engage young people in Britain. It is sponsored by PwC, Linklaters, Refinitiv, the Executive Leadership Council, Herman Miller and Facebook

Tobun said: “It is once again an honour to be named on this list, especially during what has been a very challenging year for so many people.

“This list is a great way to inspire young people across the country and encourage them to be the best version of themselves.

“From a personal perspective, these accolades are always wonderful but the truth is, we have a lot of work to do to continue to support, mentor and inspire young people who face so many societal barriers to success

Sodexo Launches Package of Student Lockdown Solutions #

Self-isolation is a significant concern for many students and Sodexo has been hearing this directly from the 100,000 plus students it is currently supporting through the Covid-19 pandemic.

Based on this knowledge, Sodexo has adapted many of its services to meet the needs of today’s students, offering catering options and wellbeing resources designed to provide additional support at a difficult time.

Working with multiple suppliers, Sodexo’s food and nutrition specialists have launched several new food delivery models specifically tailored to student requirements, with capacity to produce over one million meals per week.

Options include packed lunches and fresh evening meals prepared and delivered daily for students in self-isolation. Lunches include a choice of sandwich, piece of fruit, snack and a drink, while popular hot items are selected from a diverse call order menu.

Home-style dinner options allow students to choose from a wide range of gluten-free, meat, fish, vegetarian and vegan meals, while a frozen to reheat meal selection is produced using the latest packaging technology, designed for food safety.

All options are prepared by Sodexo chefs using the freshest seasonal ingredients, from trusted suppliers and ordering is made simple, using digital platforms that offer several options to be delivered directly to the door.

For parents or loved one’s peace of mind, Sodexo eCheques can be easily bought for set amounts and exchanged for an eVoucher. These digital vouchers can be used to pay for goods at the main supermarkets and retailers across the UK and provide a great way to send a gift knowing that it can be spent safely.

In addition, hygiene packs are a convenient way for students to purchase a range of essential supplies designed to help with infection control and personal health.

A holistic mind, body and wellbeing offering covers student’s requirements through easy access to mental health support and concierge-style services.

In partnership with Thrive, students can exclusively access a clinically effective app for the prevention, screening and management of anxiety, depression and stress. The NHS-approved app tackles common stressors such as sleep, bereavements and study issues with one student commenting: 

The app is fantastic. I’ve found it helps keep my anxiety much calmer and I’m able to manage my stress so much better.  The app has useful hints and tips to help you, as well as exercises, they are all very accessible and easy to follow.” 

Sodexo’s concierge service, Circles, has also been adapted for student use, creating some semblance of a normal home from home environment by accessing many day-to-day life services, such as personal shopping requests, travel arrangements, leisure and food boxes.

Simon Knight, managing director, universities, Sodexo UK, said: “As our university partners face the ever-changing challenges to support students during lockdowns and quarantine periods, we are working harder than ever to ensure they have the best support to plan ahead and manage disruption. 

“This new student offering is a reflection of how our teams and business can quickly adapt and develop services, creating bespoke lockdown solutions and bringing much needed improvements to the quality of life for isolating students

New eBook: Running a hospitality business during COVID #

New Channels and Revenue Streams to Explore
As the hospitality industry continues to operate under immense strain, with the current lockdown and tiering systems we see across the UK, operators are still finding ingenious ways to bring in additional revenue streams to help them get through these challenging times and beyond.

We have seen throughout this pandemic, the public willing to support their local businesses, with 48% of adults finding the idea of ordering drinks from pub, bars and restaurants for delivery appealing, and orders for recipe boxes going through the roof, as customers look for restaurant-quality food in their own home. 

Access Hospitality explores some possible options to continue trading while under lockdown or in a restricted area.

Download our free ebook today on how you can add additional revenue streams to your operation.

Springboard to get 10,000 young people into work by 2022 to tackle the hospitality staffing crisis #

Springboard has launched an initiative to get 10,000 young people into work in hospitality by 2022, to futureproof hospitality’s talent pipeline and tackle the industry’s long-term staffing crisis post-Covid and post-Brexit.

‘Springboard to 2022’ is an 18-month programme in which the charity will coordinate government support available through Plan for Jobs, training, industry partner relationships and participants’ journeys into work, while allowing hospitality businesses to focus on rebuilding from the Coronavirus Pandemic.

The hospitality industry was among the hardest hit industries by Covid and as many as 900,000 jobs are at risk, with a further 30,000 young people who normally enter the hospitality industry each year likely to struggle to find work.

Chris Gamm, CEO of Springboard said: “The Government has committed a huge amount of support to getting young people into work, training and apprenticeships, but hospitality businesses are simply not in a place to take advantage right now.

“However, hospitality has experienced a long-term staffing crisis and, post-Covid and post-Brexit, when the industry has recovered and returned to full capacity, that staffing crisis is likely to be worse than ever.”

“Our goal is to futureproof the hospitality talent pipeline and have 10,000 young people engaged, skilled and ready for work for when the industry recovers in 12-18 months’ time

Springboard will be the central hub in Springboard to 2022, managing:

Promoting the hospitality industry through outreach and engagement
Assessment and signposting to the most appropriate training
Training delivery using Springboard’s award-winning programmes
Managing employer and industry partner relationships
Mentoring and specialist careers advice and guidance
Supporting businesses to hire and retain skilled staffFor more information about Springboard to 2022, or to register interest in benefitting from the initiative, visit

The project has won the support of some of the UK’s most prominent employers, including BaxterStorey, Sodexo, CH&Co, Corbin & King, The Pig, Bidfood, Bespoke Hotels, Iconic Luxury Hotels and Edwardian Hotels.

Other bodies to back the initiative include Department for Work and Pensions, UK Hospitality, British Beer and Pub Association, British Institute of Innkeeping, Scottish Tourism Alliance and Skills Development Scotland.

Springboard has more than 30 years’ experience supporting young and disadvantaged people into work in the hospitality leisure and tourism sectors through its award-winning training and employability programmes, mentoring and specialist career support

The work begins straight away. If you have vacancies to fill now, Springboard are partnering with Harri’s HospitalityUnite to support businesses looking to explore the government’s Kickstart initiative.
Visit 2022 for more details.