Members’ News

May 2022

Bestway announces winners of Performance Awards 2022 #

Bestway Wholesale announced the winners of its Industry-leading performance awards at a prestigious ceremony at London’s Marriot Grosvenor Square Hotel last night, 5 May 2022. 
The Bestway Performance Awards (BPA) are open to all employees within the Bestway family - from drivers, pickers, telesales teams, store and depot colleagues to office-based colleagues and departments.
Everyone across retail and wholesale was invited to participate and nominate a colleague that has shown exemplary behaviour or outstanding achievements.
The awards - an integral part of the company’s colleague recognition program - shone a light on those who went above and beyond in providing excellent service to customers. The event was attended by people from across the wholesale industry including suppliers, members of the media, and colleagues from the Bestway and Batleys depots and head office locations.
Entertainment was provided by comedy act The Noise Next Door.

Bestway Wholesale Managing Director, Dawood Pervez, opened the ceremony by saying:
We have over 6,000 colleagues across over 60 sites, who continue to work hard to support our customers.

“Our colleagues are our greatest asset, and I’m incredibly proud of what they have achieved over the past year,
” he said.
Category Controller for Bestpets, Adam Moore, won the ‘We are one family’ Company Value Award.
Systems Administrator Vicky Colley won the ‘Everyone’s Voice Matters’ Company Value award.
Regional Support Manager Dawn Whitworth won the ‘Champion what is right’ Company Value Award
Muhammad Mayat won the ‘Be Proud of What you Do’ Company Value Award.  
The Gold Depot of the Year was won by Batley’s Cardiff Hatfield Road. The depot has seen double-digit growth for three successive years and has increased customer numbers, sales and profit while simultaneously finding cost efficiencies. The depot has successfully incorporated three different operations into one, becoming a SUPERHUB offering Collect Cash and Carry, Pet Cash and Carry, Catering, and more.
The Silver Depot of the Year was won by Bestway Nuneaton, and the Bronze Depot of the Year was won by Bestway Aintree.
‘Store of the Year’ was won by flagship store, Costcutter Dunnington. Due to its outstanding results and community work.  
The ‘Store Colleague of the Year’ was won by Daniella Jordan, Store Manager of Costcutter Dawlish. Daniella first joined the company at the start of Covid as a zero-hour temp and proved to be an ambitious and a great asset, soon becoming a supervisor and then store manager herself.
Taking home the award for ‘Head Office Colleague of the Year’ was Accounts Supervisor, Selvawani Thavanessan.
Prizes were also awarded to ‘Unsung Hero’ Chris Cox, Team Leader of Depot Operations, ‘Field Colleague of the Year’ Jason McKay, Territory Sales Manager, and ‘Depot Colleague of the Year’ Ummar Choudhary, General Manager of Bestway Enfield.
Bestway’s supportive suppliers were also recognised on the night, with Coca-Cola Europacific Partners awarded both ‘Supplier of the Year’ and ‘Best Use of Data’, JTI was awarded ‘Best Supply Chain Management and Stock Availability’ award, PepsiCo Walkers was awarded ‘Best Cash and Carry Initiative’ and Country Choice was awarded ‘Best Retail Initiative’
All winners were presented with a certificate and trophy on stage and employee winners won a cash bonus in recognition of their commitment and hard work.
The nominees and winners for all the awards were selected by colleagues from across the Bestway business. The approach demonstrates the ‘everyone’s voice matters’ ethos of the business, which emphasises the importance of colleagues recognising each other and their achievements. 

CH&CO strikes gold with a RoSPA Gold Medal Award #

CH&CO’s exceptional health and safety performance has been recognised and rewarded with a RoSPA Gold Medal Award.

This is the sixth consecutive year that the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) has awarded its highest accolade across the whole of the diverse independent hospitality and catering business which includes workplaces, education, healthcare, leisure, destinations, events and venues.

The RoSPA Health & Safety Awards scheme is one of the most globally respected and recognised accolades. It gives organisations the platform to confirm and showcase its ongoing expertise and commitment to excellence in health and safety standards, whilst benchmarking its performance and ensuring consistency year on year.

Allister Richards, COO, CH&CO, said: “We’re very proud to have been awarded the RoSPA Gold Medal Award. To achieve RoSPA Gold for six consecutive years is testament to our ongoing commitment, expertise and comprehensive approach to health and safety across the CH&CO family.

“Throughout the pandemic our teams continued to adapt to the challenges we all faced as well as implementing the necessary requirements for new legislations including Natasha’s Law and Calorie Labelling. Our excellent culture of safety standards across all our sites and offices is achieved through a variety of training and communication tools and we’re delighted to have our practices and systems rubber stamped once again. Thank you to all of our teams across CH&CO who have played their part in keeping people safe and retaining this globally respected award

Julia Small, RoSPA’s Achievements Director, said: “This is a fantastic and well-deserved accomplishment. All our award entrants demonstrate their unwavering commitment and passion for keeping people safe at work.

“By receiving this recognition CH&CO join like-minded businesses and organisations worldwide, who represent the very best in their approach to Health and Safety. I would like to add my personal thanks for all the work that it has taken to secure this well-deserved award – congratulations to all those involved, who champion and drive up Health and Safety standards every day. You are a fantastic example to others in your sector

Kelly Barrell joins FEA council #

"Diversity and cooperation across the foodservice industry are imperatives"

Kelly Barrell has joined the FEA council and will serve on both the marketing and revenue committee and its newly created media sub-group.  Part of her brief is to support initiatives that will facilitate diversity not only on the FEA council, but also through the membership and in the wider foodservice equipment industry. 

Barrell, who is a business development manager with Marren, has considerable experience in marketing.  She is looking to help FEA forge partnerships with other organisations and associations to promote members' interests.  She says, "A personal aspiration is to help FEA strengthen the bridge between the foodservice equipment sector and hospitality operators.  We need to align our efforts to help meet the challenges we all face, such as the skills shortage. 

"FEA is the leading association for the foodservice equipment industry - I believe that a key objective must be to promote cooperation and coordination between all those engaged in the supply chain.  Together we are stronger and will be able to further the interests not only of members but also of all those in the foodservice equipment industry

Paul Anderson is vice chair of FEA.  He says, "Kelly brings a fresh perspective and her approach underlines the benefits and advantages of diversity - which FEA has been encouraging for many years.  I know she will play a key role in taking FEA forward and helping us to promote the welfare of our members." 

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 

Sodexo reveal its Accelerators finalists #

Sodexo, in partnership with L Marks, has selected five start-ups to take part in a 10-week programme to road-test their propositions in a bid to find innovative new solutions in the areas of smart buildings, employee experience and sustainability. 

Over 400 start-ups applied to the prorgamme which launched in January this year, with 21 then selected to ptich their business propositions to Sodexo at live events in London and Dublin. 

The 21 start-ups pitched their innovations (virtually and in-person) to an audience of Sodexo senior leaders, operational teams as well as the organisation’s experts in areas such as sustainability, employee engagement, marketing, supply chain as well as market consultants. 

In order to ensure solutions relevant to its operations were among the finalists Sodexo, opened up the pitches to its colleagues around the business by live-streaming the events and enabling colleagues to have a say through an app-based voting platform. 

The chosen five finalists are:

Asseticom - a pioneering digital solution that advances asset data collection and building surveying. 

Hark Systems - a technology company specialising in helping enterprises to improve efficiency and reduce waste by providing visibility and automatic control over assets such as energy metres, building management systems and industrial systems 

Advanced Bacterial Sciences (ABS) - developing next-generation bacterial treatments for waste and water management, pollution remediation and agriculture that boost efficiency, cut maintenance and running costs and regenerate natural systems.

Wayleadr - reimagining the last mile of commuter journeys by connecting smart buildings with smart vehicles, saving time, rightsizing real estate spend and curbing carbon emissions 

Infogrid's AI Building Intelligence Platform makes buildings healthier for occupants, more efficient for managers to operate and more sustainable for the planet.

The five finalists will now work with Sodexo teams on a ten-week programme which will enable them to test, refine and adapt their business propositions in a live operational environment. They will be mentored and supported by Sodexo’s subject matter experts and will look to develop their solutions in line with the organisation’s Vital Spaces workplace proposition.

Julie Ennis, CEO Sodexo Corporate Services, UK & Ireland said: “We were delighted with the quality and volume of applications we received for the programme.  The pitch days were very exciting and action-packed. 

“Technology enabled a number of the start-ups to pitch remotely and by live streaming the event we were able to invite colleagues from across our business, not just in the UK and Ireland but from around the world to watch the pitches and be involved in the selection process via the voting platform.

“The feedback and votes from both days helped us decided on the final five and we look forward to the finding out how the five get on during the next stage of the programme, which will test their solutions in our live operations.

Sodexo’s Accelerators innovation programme has already launched in China, Brazil, India, France and Sweden.  For the UK and Ireland programme Sodexo has partnered with L Marks - an innovation specialist with experience of running over 70 programmes with some of the world's leading companies. 

Through its extensive global network and rigorous scouting methods L Marks was able to uncover the most promising early and growth stage companies that are operating in food services and facilities management and supported Sodexo in the final selection.

Compass Group HY Results - Strong growth drives revenue above pre-COVID level #

Strong growth drives revenue above pre-COVID level2 Commencing a £500m share buyback programm

FTSE 100 Compass Group PLC, the world’s largest food service provider, which operates in 44 countries, employs around 480,000 people globally and serves millions of meals every day, has today issued its Half Year results for the six months ended 31 March 2022.

In summary, the Group has delivered another strong performance, hitting 100% of pre-COVID revenues by the end of the period - a major milestone for the business - alongside record new business wins and its highest ever client retention rate. Compass has made further progress on its margin, maintaining its FY guidance despite current inflationary pressures, while upgrading its organic growth guidance to around 30% for the full year (up from 20-25%). Given its confidence in the future, the Group has also announced a £500 million share buyback programme, commencing later this year.
Operationally, the Group has seen a notable recovery in its Business & Industry sector, as more clients use free food and events to entice people back to the office, and supported by increased uptake in its digital offering. Sustainability initiatives continue to be a key competitive advantage with clients and consumers, with the Group rolling out carbon labelling and more plant-forward options across more of its sites.
While inflation remains a challenge for everyone, the Group’s procurement scale, culinary innovation and resilient business model are helping it to mitigate this while still remaining price competitive versus the high street, with inflation also creating opportunities by driving more organisations to outsource their catering for the first time.

Half year performance summary
• Q2 underlying revenue at 99% of 2019 revenues with run rate now above our pre-COVID level2
• Organic growth of 37.9% driven by strong performance in North America and Europe
• Excellent net new business growth, total in HY 2022 exceeds entire FY 2021 net new business
• Operating margin of 5.8%, an increase of 240bps on HY 2021
• Leverage further reduced to 1.3x net debt/EBITDA, back within our target range
• Commencing a share buyback programme with up to £500m this calendar year

Operational highlights
• Strong growth across all sectors, with notable volume recovery in Business & Industry and Education
• Record new business wins of £2.5bn4 over the last 12 months, with broad based growth across all regions
• Client retention rate at highest ever level of 95.8% • Net M&A expenditure of £109m, further increasing our presence in delivered-in solutions

Strategy – positioning for the future
• Capitalising on the significant market growth opportunities in first time outsourcing • Continuing to strengthen our competitive advantage in vending, digital solutions and ESG
• Resilient business model helps mitigate heightened inflation – also a tailwind to outsourcing

• Increasing FY 2022 organic revenue guidance from 20 – 25% to around 30%
• Margin guidance remains unchanged; expect FY 2022 underlying operating margin to be over 6%, exiting the year at around 7% Statutory results
• Statutory revenue increased by 36.3% and operating profit was up by 279.8%

Dominic Blakemore, Group Chief Executive, said:

We continue to recover strongly from the pandemic and have achieved the important milestone of revenue exceeding our pre-COVID level on a run rate basis. We have seen a notable improvement in Business & Industry and Education as employees return to the office and students to in-person learning. Net new business growth has been excellent, particularly in North America and Europe where we have mobilised a significant number of recent wins and benefited from our highest ever client retention rate.

We are mindful of global inflationary pressures, which have been exacerbated by the tragic events in Ukraine. Although we expect inflation to increase and continue at a heightened level in the medium term, we have a resilient business model to help mitigate this challenge. Inflation also provides a further impetus to outsourcing as organisations seek savings and we are capturing this growth opportunity as demonstrated by our record new business wins.

Given our strong first half performance and positive outlook, we are increasing our full year organic revenue growth guidance from 20 – 25% to around 30%.  Whilst we are cautious about the inflationary environment, our margin guidance remains unchanged, with full year underlying operating margin expected to be over 6%, exiting the year at around 7%.

While investing in future growth, our increasing profit and cash flow continue to reduce leverage, which is now back within our target range. Our strong balance sheet and excellent growth prospects give us the confidence to commence a share buyback programme with up to £500m during this calendar year.

Looking further ahead, we remain excited about the significant structural growth opportunities globally, leading to the potential for revenue and profit growth above historical rates, returning margin to pre-pandemic levels and rewarding shareholders with further returns.

e-foods 'Catercloud'- The Importance of Good Communication between Chefs and FOH Teams. #

Communication between chefs and front of house teams in the food industry is imperative to reduce the risk of allergy incidents and miscommunication. Menus are created by chefs, often with head office support, whether that be in a restaurant, hotel, hospital, or school. In hospitals and care homes, dieticians will also provide additional support, so the onus is on them to communicate ingredients and allergies to the wider team.

Chefs may need to alter the recipe if the suppliers send substitute products, or if they receive seasonal fresh produce, which can affect the allergens in that recipe. For example, if the chefs add a drop of cream (contains MILK) or if they add MUSTARD to the cheese sauce, the front of house teams need to be aware so they can communicate this to the customers.

Communication between the chef’s team and front of house must form part of the daily procedures. Never assume the other team members know which ingredients have been used and which menu items may be suitable for customers with food allergies.

The front of house team is often made up of part-time or agency staff and may not be familiar with the menu items on offer. The customer will interact with the FOH team member; therefore, they must have enough knowledge to provide correct information for customers with allergies. The company policy may recommend that FOH staff confirm with the chef or manager before taking the order from the customer, however they need to have a positive attitude and should feel confident when talking to customers with allergy requests.

It is good practice to introduce a daily “pre-service” brief if the menu changes daily, or on a regular basis if the menu generally remains the same. This can be done using a template that includes confirmation of the menu used; the chef delivering the brief will ensure due diligence and the document can be filed with the daily HACCP sheets.

The procedures should include a robust process that clearly identifies all allergen-free orders when the information is given to the team. There are various methods that can help FOH staff, for example, using tablets or order pads to take the order that highlight allergen-free requests. It is important not to rely on this and that a conversation between FOH and chefs must take place. Once the order has been received in the kitchen, normal procedures for preparing and cooking the meal should be followed.

It is best practice to take the allergen-free order straight to the customer first - often the meal is clearly identified using a flag placed on the plate or a different colour or style of crockery. The chef who has prepared the meal should hand this directly to the FOH staff member clearly stating “This is the gluten-free meal for table 6” for example. It is no good having a member of staff take two meals to the table stating, “one of these is gluten free - I think it is this one!”

The chef should always listen to queries from FOH staff; they often don’t have the same knowledge as the chef, so all questions should be answered clearly. When there is a function or event, it is best practice to serve all dietary requests from a separate serving counter, with one or two FOH staff taking responsibility for managing guests with specific dietary requests during the whole service. They will know exactly where the guests are sitting and should note their name and their meal choice. As with all instances, good communication is important during service at a formal event to reduce the risk of error.

Training is important and should be planned into an annual training plan. Online training may provide basic knowledge; however, it is important to ensure training includes a suitable level of allergen training according to the role and responsibility of the staff members. Managers, supervisors, and senior chefs should attend a higher level of training than other team members as they have more responsibility (Level 3 is recommended). Other team members should attend Level 2 allergen training or a similar standard, with regular refresher training planned in. This will help to embed a positive food allergen culture into the team.

Robust allergen procedures, knowledgeable staff, and a positive allergen culture will give the customer the confidence to dine in your establishment and become a regular customer.
by Jacqui McPeake JACS Ltd on behalf of Allergen Accreditation

CaterCloud is the leading integrated solution for allergen, nutrition, menu planning and cost management and it’s FREE TO USE – sign up here or contact for more information.

Elior renews its commitment to Armed Forces Corporate Covenant #

Leading contract caterer, Elior, has renewed its support for The Armed Forces Corporate Covenant to demonstrate its commitment to the recruitment of service veterans and their families and to support the Armed Forces community. Air Vice Marshal Ranald Munro joined Elior’s CEO Catherine Roe to co-sign the Armed Forces Covenant at Elior’s headquarters in London. 

The Armed Forces Covenant is a commitment from the nation that those who serve or have served, and their families, are treated fairly and not disadvantaged in their day-to-day lives because of their military service. The government is committed to supporting the Armed Forces community by working with a range of partners who have signed the Covenant.
Elior’s renewal of its pledge acts as a timely reminder of the company’s commitment in the Military Covenant’s 10th anniversary year. To support the Covenant, Elior will be actively recruiting ex-military personnel where possible. The contract caterer will also continue to recruit and support the employment of service personnel’s spouses and partners, and, where viable, transfer them from one contract to another when their service partner is deployed at another location.
Re-signing the Armed Forces Covenant gives Elior the opportunity to encourage existing reservists to discuss their involvement with other colleagues and promote the reservist role to other employees. Elior will support employees who choose to be members of the Reserve forces, by accommodating their training and deployment.
To further demonstrate its commitment to the Armed Forces Covenant, Elior will offer a discount to members of the Armed Forces Community in their customer facing catering operations, such as museum cafes. Elior will also offer a discount on room hire and pre-ordered food for event bookings at popular sports and football club locations where Elior provides catering and hospitality services.
Catherine Roe, CEO at Elior said: “We love the work we do with the military sector, and we are immensely proud of the ex-service personnel we have onboard at Elior. We recognise the immense value that serving personnel, veterans and military families contribute to our business and to our country. We want to work harder to support those that have served our country and restating our support of the Armed Forces Covenant demonstrates our commitment even further. There is a lot for us to build on and we are looking forward to strengthening our offering and expanding our reach over the coming months and years.”

FEA announces trio of award winners in foodservice light equipment and tableware sector #

Which company has done the most to support the foodservice light equipment and tableware sector?  Which sales person has gone the extra mile?  Which individual should be recognised for their exceptional dedication and commitment to the industry?  FEA unveiled the latest winners of the annual Light Equipment and Tableware Forum Awards on Tuesday 10th May, during the Forum’s popular charity dinner at Whittlebury Hall, Towcester.  The first two awards, the Distributor Cup and Sales Professional of the Year, were announced by Steve Goodliff, chair of the FEA Light Equipment and Tableware (LET) Group.

The Distributor Cup recognises the distributor company that has done the most to support the promotion and sales of light equipment and tableware during the last year.  This award is voted for by the members of the FEA LET Group, which produced a shortlist of three companies: Alliance Disposables, Brakes, and Stephensons.   The winner, for the fourth year in a row, was Alliance Disposables Limited. Jack Sweet of Alliance was on hand to pick up the award for the company.  Steve Goodliff commented, “Alliance’s consistency and support is simply outstanding.  Huge congratulations to the team for winning yet again.” 

The Sales Professional of the Year is awarded to the person who has contributed most to the sales of utensils and smallwares over the last year. It could be that they made a significant one-off sale or contract win, or it could be they added value to the business by helping a customer to identify key products relevant to their operation.   The shortlist was Euan Stirling from Stephensons, Jodie Musgrove from Brakes, and Rob Priest from Parsley in Time.   The 2022 award went to Jodie Musgrove from Brakes, who won for the second time in a row.  Sadly she couldn’t be at the event, so Tina Carter of Brakes accepted the award on her behalf. 

Jodie has done an outstanding job and is a well deserving winner,” said Steve Goodliff. “Her hard work has not gone unnoticed: to win twice in a row is outstanding.” 

The Donald Bird Award was presented by Donald’s son, Mike Bird.  It recognises an individual who has gone the extra mile and had a significant impact on the light equipment and tableware industry.  The 2022 winner, who recently retired from FEM, has been described as ‘one of a kind’ and ‘one of the industry’s most flamboyant and popular figures.’   As he accepted the award the audience stood to give him a standing ovation.  He is Martin Shaw. 

The dinner raised £890 for St John Ambulance, which was Donald Bird’s chosen charity. 

For information about the 2023 LET Forum, contact FEA. 

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 

Five key trends are driving recovery of the eating out sector #

Following its market forecasts* released at HRC, IGD – leading providers of insight for the food and consumer goods industry – has revealed the five trends that are driving sector recovery.
Eating out will recover but it won’t look the same as it did” explained Nicola Knight, Senior analyst, at today’s industry webinar – Eating out: a world of challenges and opportunities. 

She continued; “The pent-up demand that boosted the market when restrictions were lifted at intervals over the past two years will be less evident as this year progresses. With consumer confidence at a record low, the sector is facing continued challenges which means it must adapt.”

To win in the post-Covid world, business need to focus on five areas: 

Perfecting experience
Operators must be at the top of their game – every time. The cost-of-living pressures facing consumers mean that they may be going out less often but when they do, their expectations of having a fantastic experience will be higher than ever. 
Right format, right price
Know your customer.  Businesses need to follow and understand the post-covid consumer and their habits so they’re in the right place to serve them from a site that meets their needs and expectations.

Essential efficiency
With all input costs rising at once, operators need to examine every part of their business to improve not only productivity but also efficiency.  Technology has a huge role to play but so does continuous, rigorous evaluation of where to invest.
Closer to consumers
At such an unpredictable time, and with margins under enormous pressure, it’s more important than ever for businesses to stay close to what consumers are saying they need and want, to inform decision making.
Redefining value 
Value doesn’t necessarily mean cheap.  Faced with increasing costs, operators should avoid blanket discounting and focus on how they appeal to value-conscious consumers to win the biggest share of discretionary spend as possible.
For more content from Eating out: a world of challenges and opportunities, which includes market forecasts, how consumers currently feel about eating out and a view of the economic landscape, please contact

Award-winning chef Chantelle Nicholson partners with Sodexo’s schools and universities business #

Sodexo has appointed Chantelle Nicholson as a consultant chef to support the continued development of its school and universities business. 

Sustainability is central to the partnership with Sodexo and Chantelle, who share similar philosophies and have the joint goal of giving children and young people the opportunity to make healthy and sustainable food choices that support their health and wellbeing. 

The partnership will see Chantelle, chef patron at the new sustainable restaurant Apricity , which consciously reconsiders every aspect of the operation from menus to washing dishes to ensure it is low waste, work alongside Sodexo’s culinary team to drive innovation in menu development with a focus on healthy and plant-rich dishes designed to be served to children and young people   

Chantelle will also play a key role in developing the next generation of culinary talent by providing work placements at her Mayfair-based restaurant. 

Chantelle, who was former chef-owner of popular restaurant Tredwells, which was the recipient of a green Michelin star in 2021, is an advocate for seasonality and sustainability, championing veg-forward cooking through both her restaurant and her cookbook, Planted. 

Sodexo's school and universities business provides school meals to over 500 state schools and over 70 independent schools in the UK. They also offer on-campus food and FM services at around 100 university locations across the UK and Ireland. 

Chantelle Nicholson, Chef Patron, Apricity Restaurant and Chef Consultant, Schools &

Universities said: 

"I am delighted to be working with Sodexo, who share my belief in the importance of sustainability and seasonality. I am very much looking forward to working together and helping the team to create some fantastic healthy dishes and provide meaningful work experience to people at my restaurant. 

“I am committed to creating a more sustainable future and making sure children and young people make healthy choices to eat well now and in the future is a big part of this

Philip Smith, CEO, schools and universities Sodexo UK & Ireland said:   

"We're delighted to be partnering with Chantelle and excited to see what her expertise will bring to our food offering. Chantelle will be supporting us with signature dishes development, chef training, as well as pupil engagement at some of our school sites. In addition, we are looking to work with Chantelle to support her passion for sustainability within the food industry. 

“Chantelle is one of the UK’s leading restauranteurs, and we know she’ll be an inspiration to all involved

Freemans Event Partners launches Costa Coffee into the event space #

A new partnership between Freemans Event Partners and Costa Coffee has officially launched at the Betfred British Masters which took place at the Belfry between 5-8 May 2022.
The collaboration is one of the first to bring the Nation’s Favourite Coffee Shop* into the events world.
Costa Coffee will serve everything from breakfast to lunch and sweet treats through to its signature range of handcrafted hot and cold drinks. Costa Coffee Now Serving M&S Food will also be available.
Stephen Freeman, CEO of Freemans Event Partners explains:
Coffee has always been a consistently high seller in our concessions and Costa Coffee is the most recognisable coffee brand in the UK. So, taking the lead in delivering an innovative high street coffee shop experience into the event channel is an exciting prospect.
“When we look at the coffee market, UK branded coffee shops are forecasted to reach over £5bn in sales by the end of 2023. There’s tremendous growth to be found here. So, to bring something this unique to the market and to launch at the British Masters, where we have a strong track record in providing unique hospitality offerings for spectators, we’re certain this outlet will be popular with customers
Research by the Centre for Economics and Business Research revealed that 95 million cups of coffee are enjoyed by UK consumers every day, and now the UK branded coffee shop market has recovered to 87% of its pre-pandemic value.
Stephen adds:
From now until December, we will be working with Costa Coffee across a number of events. This will include the likes of the Royal Cheshire Show, the Formula One British Grand Prix and Silverstone, the BMW PGA Championship and multiple fixtures at Twickenham.”
Marian Fagbemiro, Costa Coffee Corporate Partnerships Director comments:
We’re really excited to be working with Freemans Event Partners to bring our new Costa Coffee mobile outlet to some amazing live events this year, starting with the British Masters. The new Costa ‘store’ provides coffee fans with all their favourite Costa products, including our new summer menu and Costa Coffee Now Serving M&S Food range. No matter the location, customers will be able to enjoy their Costa food and drink in the heart of any live event.”

Nestlé Professional launches Sustainability Index 2022 #

The last few years have driven lasting changes to consumer behaviour, impacting our relationship with food and the businesses that serve it. To identify emerging trends, and pinpoint opportunities for foodservice leaders, Nestlé Professional today launched a new report: Footprint Sustainability Index 2022. Packed with industry insight and interviews with key influencers, the report aims to help foodservice leaders adapt their business and operations, enabling them to thrive in this newly evolved landscape. 
Developed in collaboration with Footprint Intelligence, the report has been created using consumer surveys, industry insight and in-depth industry interviews. Designed to address all of the critical issues faced by the industry, it provides insight and recommendations on clients and consumers, sustainable diets, energy, emissions and natural resources; waste and resources; policy and supply chain; and employee health and wellbeing.
Katya Simmons, managing director Nestlé Professional UK&I says: 
The foodservice industry is going through unprecedented change. The cost-of-living is rising, supply shortages are impacting prices, and new legislation is being introduced, encouraging operators to rethink labelling, packaging and waste management.
“Fortunately, foodservice business can reduce costs, comply with legislation and keep consumers happy with effective carbon cutting and resource efficiency. To provide inspiration and actionable advice, wcollaborated with Footprint Intelligence to compile this report. We hope that foodservice businesses find it of value; helping them to grow their business while reducing carbon footprint.

To view and download the Sustainability Index report, food operators can go to

e-foods Charity Golf Day raises an amazing £13k! #

e-foods hosted it’s annual Charity Golf Day on Thursday 5 May 2022, with over 80 attendees, to raise money for two amazing charities, Hospitality Action and Making a Difference Tameside.

The day was held at the wonderful Mottram Hall and guests got to enjoy a four ball round of golf, plus competitions on the course, followed by an evening dinner with a charity auction and raffle, with prizes awarded for the competition winners and overall winning team.

The day was attended by some of e-foods amazing clients, suppliers and partners and a wonderful day was had by all. Martin Dore from Bidfood, beat our very own CEO Paul in ‘Beat the Boss, our ‘Nearest the pin’ winners were Ant Wright from Birchall Foodservice and Martin Cozens from Banc and ‘Longest Drive’ went to Tom Connolly from Enterprise Brands and Joe Pritchard from MHA.

Nathan Jennings, Key Accounts Director at e-foods (part of e-f group), said “We were delighted to raise such a significant sum for Hospitality Action and Making A difference Tameside, both of whom continue to do such outstanding work. Hospitality Action has offered vital assistance to all who work or have worked within hospitality in the UK and Making a Difference Tameside, provide long-term opportunities for people who are aiming to rebuild their lives and improve their social integration.”

e-foods would like to give special thanks to the following businesses, that donated to the event, raffle and auction, so a thanks to Wenlock Spring, Ice Entertainment UK, Dewberry Redpoint, Tea from the Manor, Bidfood, The Chester Grosvenor, H20 Publishing, Brakes, Lancashire Cricket, Set Produce, Jo Sandford Abstract Artist and Mottram Hall.

Nathan added: “It was a hugely successful day and evening, and my thanks go to everyone who attended and helped us raise so much money for two amazing causes. And we hope to raise even more next year!

New research lifts the lid on Baby Boomers' Care Home Catering Expectations #

New research out today reveals that a whopping 80% of Baby Boomers would pay a premium for better quality food and hospitality in a care home if they could afford to – showing just how important the food and drink provision is when it comes to increasing occupancy and driving revenue for care homes. 

The survey, commissioned by leading food wholesaler and catering provider Creed Foodservice, takes an in-depth look at what the Baby Boomer generation - those aged 58-76 years old, born during the post-World War II baby boom - are seeking from care home catering.  

There is a demand for a variety of dining areas in the care home with over half (54%) of respondents saying they would like a café/deli style informal dining area. Similarly, 53% would like access to a formal dining area, with set tables and chairs. Additionally, four out of ten (39%) would welcome picnic-style alfresco areas and over a third (36%) would like a casual lounge with sofa seats where they can enjoy food in takeaway boxes in front of the TV or chatting with friends. 

Although British fare remains the firm favourite, global cuisine would also be welcomed on the menu. The three most popular international cuisines are Italian (60%), Chinese (56%) and Indian (47%). In addition, three quarters (75%) would like to see pop-up cooking serving food such as BBQs, Indian curries with choices of sides and authentic Italian pizzas cooked in a pizza oven. In particular, cooking stations for special calendar events and national holidays such as The Queen’s Jubilee and Easter would be welcomed.  

Andy Williams, Care Sector Specialist at Creed Foodservice, says: “Care home catering has hugely evolved in recent years, and the next generation entering the space – the Baby Boomers – have a higher expectation when it comes to quality, variety and taste of food and drink. We know anecdotally that catering will need to adapt to meet their needs and desires, but we want to get a really firm grip on what this generation is looking for so that we’re able to guide and advise the care sector on the specifics. 

“The role the hospitality offering plays is huge; a staggering 95% of Baby Boomers say that the food and drink provision is important when choosing a care home. Furthermore, eight out of ten would pay more for a premium offering if their budget allowed. It’s not just a ‘nice to have’ – it’s a fundamental part of the decision-making process and will make a difference to occupancy rates, revenue and profit

The research also revealed that health and sustainable initiatives are also important to Baby Boomers, with half (50%) saying they would be pleased to see food and drink sourced ethically or sustainably. Furthermore, four out of ten (43%) would like to see nutritional and calorie information on menus and over a quarter (27%) see the benefit of their meals being fortified with things like vitamins, minerals, protein powders, collagen and CBD.  

When it comes to hot drinks, classic British favourites are standing the test of time. 70% would like to have barista standard coffees such as flat white, cappucino and latte on offer and 74% would like teas such as breakfast, earl grey, peppermint and chamomile on the menu. Interestingly, appetite for more unique options is also emerging, with a fifth (20%) saying they would like to have alternative milk options such as almond, oat or coconut, as well as the option to choose additions such as beetroot powder, blue matcha and black charcoal.  

Andy Williams continues: “Baby Boomers are interesting; they are the first generation that, more generally, have the money to enjoy better quality dining experiences, have been introduced to new and emerging food trends early enough to have embraced some of them as part of their day-to-day diet, and are better travelled so have experienced global cuisine. Traditional British food and drink still plays a fundamental role, but gone are the days of ‘meat and two veg’. There is simply a higher expectation for the hospitality offering to evolve and mirror the standards and offering this generation is used to. 

“Meeting these expectations, as well as catering for often complex dietary requirements, is a challenge. We’re in the middle of a national staff shortage, rising food prices and it’s been an uncertain couple of years. It’s vital that the care sector is supported by their foodservice partners – through menu and recipe creation, practical development sessions in the kitchen, open discussions around how to better serve their residents and so on

The research also revealed a fifth (20%) would choose to order their food and drink electronically, via an iPad or phone app. Although more respondents favour the traditional route of either viewing a printed menu and writing down their choices (40%) or ordering face-to-face with a member of staff (38%), there is certainly a move towards quicker and more convenient ordering methods, which is only likely to grow. 

In addition to the research, Creed Foodservice has also launched a new Care Menu Solution – a three-week menu plan that includes full recipes as well as live data including nutrition, allergens and costs for every meal in the plan, making it incredibly easy to use. Dishes include British classics such as roast chicken, shepherds pie and fish and chips, alongside global cuisines including Italian pizzas, Indian and Thai curries and Chinese-inspired noodle dishes.  

To find out more about Creed Foodservice and view the Care Menu Solution please visit: or email Andy Williams, Care Sector Specialist at Creed Foodservice, on 

Workers return to workplace catering as they embrace hybrid working, reports TWC #

Thanks to our collaboration with MealTrak - the nation’s leading continuous tracking programme for food-to-go and out-of-home consumption, we are now able to report the latest consumer trends to support operators, wholesalers and suppliers with their forecasting and strategic planning.  
Following the pandemic, we are often asked to what extent workers are returning to their offices and the year-on-year growth in visits to work-based catering outlets is further proof of the direction of this trend. In 12 w/e 21 March 2022, MealTrak reported a 152% increase in visits to workplace catering venues vs. the same period in 2021. The growth fell somewhat in 12 w/e 18 April 2022, almost certainly due in part to the long Easter weekend, however this could also indicate that consumers are starting to tighten their belts, as we have seen across many sectors (including retail).
Tom Fender, Development Director at TWC, said:

We all know that many workers are returning to workplaces across the UK, to varying degrees of frequency, but we are also pleased to report that visits to the catering outlets associated with workplaces are also growing. I know this will be important to operators as well as their wholesaler and supplier partners as we move through 2022 and beyond. This is of course a trend to watch given the cost-of-living crisis. In previous recessions we have seen a rise in ‘brown bagging’, where consumers prepare food at home to take to work to save money.

Nestlé Professional looks at How to Improve Business Performance in the New Era of Working #

Take six international experts on the future of work and workplace culture, each handpicked from WORKTECH Academy’s global network for their insight into a different aspect of company performance. Interview them for a podcast series. Study the ideas and opinions that flow from six conversations with pioneers in the field – and analyse the lessons learnt bettering individual, team and organisational working in the new era of hybrid working. Discover new ways to get the creative juices flowing in your business and open up opportunities for better performance.

What we discovered from the podcast series is that there are clear links between the social dimension of work and improving business performance – taking a break with colleagues and enjoying informal interactions can be far more productive than being glued to a desk all day.

However, the story of reviving workplace culture after the global pandemic is not simply a social one – it is based on a complex amalgam of inter-related factors in which design, technology, leadership, culture and neuroscience all have a part to play.

Autonomy & Interaction

In the first podcast in the Smart Coffee Break series, we interviewed Despina Katsikakis, Global Lead for Total Workplace at Cushman & Wakefield, about the origins and evolution of office productivity. Her research, stretching back to the 1980s, has explored the relationship between a worker’s level of face-to-face interaction and level of personal autonomy as a way ofto raise productivityimproving workplace culture. 

What employers experienced during the coronavirus crisis was an increase in personal autonomy while working from home, but a dramatic decrease in social interaction with colleagues. Despina Katsikakis believes that improved business performance will depend on a return to the office as a place of social connection, and on giving employees more opportunities for face-to-face interaction as well as more autonomy.
That means more coffee points, more water-cooler moments and more serendipitous encounters. As she told us: ‘Organisations need to focus on creating dynamic ways to reinforce those elements of serendipity, of occasion, of memorable and delightful experiences.’

Click here to listen to the podcast.

Birmingham Women’s Hospital catering services to get investment boost following link up with Sodexo #

Sodexo has strengthened its successful 25-year relationship with Birmingham Women's and Children's NHS Foundation Trust by taking on the catering contract at the women’s hospital. 

The catering and facilities management firm, which already runs the contract at the children’s hospital, successfully bid for a tender that is worth up to £5 million throughout its duration. 

Now Sodexo will work with the staff in place to bring about a number of improvements as well as invest in refurbishing the lower-level restaurant.

Further improvements will include bringing in new technology, such as Leanpath to minimise food waste and the DRIVE recipe management system to ensure quality nutritional meals.

Digital ordering will also be brought in to help customers and patients. 

Phil Orton, Associate Director at Birmingham Women's and Children's NHS Foundation Trust, said:

We'd like to thank the catering team at our Women's Hospital for their dedication and commitment while delivering a seamless service throughout the process of developing and implementing a new catering contract. 

“We’re excited to see their work continue to shine through as we transfer our services to Sodexo and continue to enhance our food provision for our patients, visitors and families. 

“With added investments for service improvements, we look forward to a positive future within our catering service. We’d also like to say a thank you to all who have visited our services in the past and to expect exciting new ventures in the future. 

“One thing that we all have in common is our passion for food – together we can continue to enhance our restaurant services with fresh concepts that Sodexo has to offer
. “ 

Neal Gisborne, Sodexo’s Divisional Director, added: “We have worked with the Trust at the children’s hospital for more than 25 years and we look forward to enhancing this important relationship by taking on the restaurant and patient dining service at the women’s hospital .

We will invest into the women’s hospital service to enhance the offer. we will also ensure we hold regular engagement sessions with patients to gain feedback and look forward to working with all the staff at the dining service to achieve these aims.” 

The contract with Sodexo at Birmingham Women’s Hospital started on 30 April 2022.

Tag Team Technology #

The significance of 365 Retail Markets’ acquisition of Spoonfed in late 2021 is already attracting attention across the hospitality sector. Last month, Spoonfed’s Senior Director for North America, Stephen Kuhn, was delighted to join the 365 team at the NAMA Show in Chicago last month and was struck by the synergy in what is being offered and by the response that it had from those visiting the stand.

I’m not sure if I was totally surprised - we were all certainly busy!!  It makes complete sense doesn’t it?… 365’s new range of unattended kiosks and vending made us the busiest stand by-far.  Once there, many Clients saw the obvious opportunity of a Connected Campus using Spoonfed - whether in-house, B&I catering managers, vending directors looking for new Sales outlets, or those running F&B across University or College campuses, it was clear that they wanted to extend their reach.

Hot on the heels of the success of NAMA, last week was the turn of the Europeans to tag-team at Milan's VendItalia -  a key event for those who want to discover the latest products, technology and solutions for today’s evolving convenience services industry.

The explosion in micro market and unattended retail technology is increasingly impacting catering operations. 365 provides innovative solutions designed to maximize the performance of retail environments and as part of their momentum in this sector, Spoonfed is able to take these same clients a further step in their desire to seize more opportunities in corporate and event hospitality.

Willie Biggart, Spoonfed EVP: “NAMA and VendItalia has shown us that there is a real appetite in many to offer hospitality in a range of scenarios. Spoonfed’s software gives them the efficiency to manage their corporate drop off catering right through to fine dining events. And as the UK suppliers for 365 we can now supplement that with expertise in contactless technology. For instance, we know there are many feeling the pain of staff shortages and this is just one obvious area where tech solutions are a massive win. We are already seeing Ops directors sitting up and taking notice as we offer a blended 24/7 approach with Spoonfed and the genius of 365’s unattended kiosks and state of the art vending options
Spoonfed and 365 Retail Markets had always recognised the issues of efficiency and staff time-saving, as being two sides of the same coin. Now they are tag teaming as they support catering teams attempting to thrive again as hospitality needs increase. The workplace continues to be flexible and fluid and the way catering is offered on a daily basis will need to be equally innovative and nimble in how it is responding to the customer’s requirement."

For more information contact: Willie Biggart 01505 246 046 or

Acclaimed Chefs join together to cook an incredible dinner in aid of Hospitality Action #

Acclaimed chefs Tom Kerridge, Sat Bains and Simon Rimmer are pulling together to cook an astounding meal at Manchester’s The Bull & Bear on Monday June 27th in honour of trade charity Hospitality Action.

This exclusive fundraising dinner celebrates the resilience of the hospitality industry where three of Hospitality Action’s ‘Chefs at Home’ cookbook contributors; Tom Kerridge, Sat Bains and Simon Rimmer will treat guests to an ‘out of this world’ four course dinner.

Tom, Sat and Simon are true ‘chef’s chefs’ respected for their mastery of flavour, technique and style.

Tom Kerridge, Chef-Patron of The Bull & Bear and Hospitality Action Patron said: “I’ve worked with Hospitality Action for many years and I’ve seen first-hand the amazing work they do, from financial advice to mental wellbeing, they are the support network and lifeline that can make all the difference. I’m delighted to be cooking alongside legends such as Simon Rimmer and Sat Bains and can’t wait to welcome you all to The Bull & Bear.”

Hospitality Action launched their Chefs at Home cookbook to mark the one-year anniversary of the first national lockdown. The book includes over 100 recipes that 54 of the UK’s leading chefs cooked at home during lockdown with their families.

As the industry’s charity, Hospitality Action continues to provide support to all those who work, or have worked in hospitality. This fundraising dinner will help all those in the hospitality industry at their time of crisis.

Mark Lewis, Chief Executive of Hospitality Action said: “In this day and age no one should have to choose between heating and eating, yet this is what many of our beneficiaries are faced with. I have no doubt that, thanks to Tom, Sat, Simon and all those involved in hosting this spectacular event, we will raise a huge amount of money for those in the industry who need it most.”

The brigade:

Starter Simon Rimmer Greens
Fish course Sat Bains Restaurant Sat Bains
Main course Tom Kerridge and Connor Black The Bull & Bear
Dessert Tom Kerridge and Connor Black The Bull & Bear

Tickets for the fundraising dinner are £150 per person, with varying table sizes available to purchase, and includes a Tappers Gin cocktail and canapé reception and a four course menu with wine throughout. Copies of The Sunday Times bestseller ‘Chefs at Home’ cookbook can also be purchased alongside tickets.

For tickets – contact Sophie Stevens on 020 3004 5505 or or to find out more visit An evening with Tom Kerridge, Sat Bains and Simon Rimmer at The Bull & Bear | Hospitality Action

CH&CO celebrates its 2022 Barista Graduates #

CH&CO has celebrated its 2022 cohort of graduate baristas, all of whom have successfully completed an eight-week Specialty Barista Traineeship.
CH&CO’s venues and workplace businesses, Venues by CH&CO, Gather & Gather and Vacherin, have partnered with social enterprise Well Grounded to offer the free Specialty Barista Traineeship programme to Londoners who are under or unemployed.

The training programme provides technical coffee training and employability skills, with paid work placements at prestigious sites across the Venues by CH&CO, Gather & Gather and Vacherin portfolios and guaranteed work with CH&CO on completion.

The eight-week course, which includes four weeks of intensive training and assessment followed by a four-week work placement, is accredited by the Specialty Coffee Association. Each graduate has gained the globally recognised Foundation Barista Skills qualification, plus Level 2 in both Customer Service and Food Safety.

Well Grounded is an award-winning social enterprise that provides accredited coffee training programmes, work placements and ongoing support to Londoners facing social and economic barriers to employment. Formed in 2017, the partnership is part of CH&CO’s ongoing commitment to raising the profile of hospitality as an exciting and rewarding career opportunity and attracting new talent to the industry.

Over the duration of the programme, the graduates gained a solid foundation of knowledge to help them grow and thrive in the coffee industry. They developed customer service skills, technical coffee skills encompassing roasting, green coffee and origins as well as essential soft skills through their work placements and one-to-one mentoring.

Their skills and achievements were celebrated at the graduation ceremony which took place at RSA House, London. CH&CO, Well Grounded and coffee industry colleagues gathered as graduates showcased their learnings by running a pop-up coffee shop and shared their personal journeys ahead of moving into employment at CH&CO sites across London.

Rob Fredrickson, Managing Director for CH&CO Leisure, who spoke at the graduation ceremony said: “Huge congratulations to the 2022 graduates. They’ve all shown fantastic energy, dedication and a real desire to learn throughout their traineeship. It’s been an absolute privilege to watch their personal and professional growth and hearing them speak so confidently about their experience and the impact the programme has had on them is heart-warming and very rewarding. We’re excited to welcome them all to the CH&CO family and I can’t wait to see their careers and bright futures unfold with us.

“A very big thank you to our partners Well Grounded who have supported the graduates throughout their traineeship. This is the fourth cohort of barista graduates that we’ve celebrated together and there’s no doubt that this inclusive programme changes lives. It’s a great way to link those with barriers to employment with an industry looking for talent and we look forward to progressing our partnership and continuing to make a positive difference

Mike Rogers, Interim CEO at Well Grounded, said: “This graduation marks another milestone for the partnership, with another fantastic cohort of graduates entering their careers in the coffee industry. The commitment of the teams at CH&CO to support and provide opportunities for the individuals has been key to the success of the programme and we look forward to seeing their continued progression as they move into roles with the organisation.

“Our traineeship programme is designed to support individuals with a range of barriers to employment through a structured, personalised learning programme – based around technical barista skills but supplemented with soft skills and employability coaching. These, along with the work placements and into work support allow the trainees to grow and become confident in their future roles. We are excited to see their progress for the future

NAFEM is back – and so is the opportunity to exhibit with FEA’s UK Pavilion #

2023 event offers UK suppliers access to a revitalised North American foodservice market

Having been cancelled by Covid in 2021, the NAFEM show is back with a bang for 2023, at the Orange County Convention Center, Orlando, Florida, from February 1st to 3rd.   UK foodservice equipment suppliers wanting to exhibit at the show have the opportunity to access a support package organised by FEA in conjunction NAFEM (the North American Association of Food Equipment Manufacturers). 

The last show, in 2019, broke records for the number of attendees and exhibitors – over 22,000 foodservice operators registered for tickets and there were 643 exhibiting companies, taking up nearly 400,000 square feet of space.  It’s hoped that, as a revitalised American foodservice industry recovers from the pandemic, the 2023 event will be even bigger and better. 

It is just an amazing show,” says Steve Goodliff, chair of FEA’s Export Group. “This is the premier foodservice equipment and supplies exhibition in the US, and it offers an unrivalled platform for any company looking to access the massive North American market.” 

Nigel Bell, chair of Adande Refrigeration, agrees.  “Having attended for a number of years, I’ve found that many major current and potential customers are represented from the US and other countries.”  

Adande is one of the companies that has taken advantage of the FEA support package at NAFEM in past shows.  The package includes an attractive 10ft x 10ft shell stand plus marketing and networking opportunities, offering a stress-free and cost-effective way to exhibit. 
To find out more about participating contact FEA’s event organiser, Jocelyn Shawyer, by email,  Prices are currently being finalised, but FEA is asking potential participants to register their interest as soon as possible, as space is limited and the number of stands taken will affect the costings.  Companies do not have to be FEA members to participate in the UK Pavilion, though those who are members will benefit from a discounted price.

NAFEM is FEA’s sister association in the USA and the two work closely together on a variety of projects.  “There is always a lot of competition to get space at the Show, and we’re very grateful to NAFEM for allocating space for the UK Pavilion,” says Goodliff.  “I’d strongly advise any UK companies considering going to the show to register their interest with FEA as soon as possible.”

For more information on the NAFEM show visit
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 

Sodexo builds on its partnership with The Bread and Butter Thing to tackle food insecurity #

The Sodexo Stop Hunger Foundation is extending its work with food redistribution charity, The Bread and Butter Thing (TBBT), to help provide nutritious food for thousands of families in the North of England while at the same time significantly reducing food that would have been waste. 

The Bread and Butter Thing (TBBT) is an award-winning food redistribution charity. It runs over 60 mobile food clubs, taking affordable food into some of the UK’s most impoverished communities. But food is just the start. TBBT uses surplus food as a catalyst to have a transformative effect on people’s lives. It aims to empower people, to enable them to better manage limited funds, connect with their neighbours and reduce loneliness – with the added bonus of encouraging them to eat better. 

Due to the ongoing cost of living crisis, TBBT has seen a significant increase in demand for membership. They currently have 27,000 members, and on average, 1,500 new families register every month, with them regularly redistributing over 100 tonnes of food a week - almost 250,000 meals. 

Sodexo’s partnership with TBBT began in February 2021. Business in the Community (BITC) brokered the relationship with TBBT and facilitated skills-based volunteering, where Sodexo initially offered support with Salesforce, logistics, and data. Further skills based volunteering, such as supporting with their branding and marketing and regular volunteering slots, are now available for all Sodexo colleagues at TBBT’s Manchester warehouse and community hubs.

Over the past year, the partnership has continued to evolve, with Sodexo utilising its services and network by trialling food redistribution activities that use food surplus and address food insecurity.

In the UK, food insecurity is a significant issue, UNICEF estimated in 2017 that 19% of children under 15 live with someone who faces moderate or severe food insecurity, and although on a global scale, hunger in the UK may seem low, compared to food insecurity levels in the EU, the UK ranks poorly. Hunger in the UK puts it fourth behind Romania, Bulgaria, and Lithuania.

However, food waste produced in the UK could make a huge difference to addressing food insecurity and fighting hunger. Figures from WRAP state that over two million tonnes of the food that goes to waste each year is still edible - that’s enough for 1.3 billion meals.

Considering these staggering statistics, to further support TBBT’s members, Sodexo Stop Hunger Foundation has provided the charity with a £10,000 grant to help deliver The Bread and Butter Thing Healthy Start Project.

Healthy Start Vouchers, an NHS benefit that provides weekly vouchers to mothers on low incomes with children under four, are significantly undervalued, with national take up at only 54%. However, they can make a significant difference to diets, offering low income families with young children funding towards fruit, veg, milk, and vitamins. TBBT are one of the few food charities to be taking the vouchers, and they can make a considerable difference to the diet of the families involved. 

The Bread and Butter Thing is working at a grassroots level to drive awareness and uptake of the recently digitalised vouchers. Since the start of the year, members of the TBBT team have started visiting hubs promoting the scheme, equipped with a tablet to check eligibility and signing people up while they collect their shopping. In doing so, they can tackle digital exclusion and language barriers at a one-to-one level with a direct positive impact on individuals. 

The grant from Sodexo’s Stop Hunger Foundation will go towards a team member’s salary who can train the volunteer teams and expand the delivery of the project across all TBBT hubs in an ongoing and sustainable way.

Claire Atkins Morris, Director of Corporate Responsibility at Sodexo UK & Ireland, said:

I am really excited about the partnership we have built with TBBT. TBBT is giving people the support they need when it’s most needed and ensuring people are empowered to make healthy choices for their families. 

“Creating a positive impact is fundamental to our social impact pledge through our people volunteering, our partners like TBBT, our planet redistributing food that would have been wasted, and our places; the communities we live and work. This partnership spotlights how sustainability and society are intrinsically linked.

Mark Game, CEO of The Bread and Butter Thing, added:

Our work is having a transformative effect in low income communities by reducing stress around food and enabling families to eat healthily and affordably. But we can’t ignore the fact that the rising cost of living is driving demand for our affordable scheme at an unprecedented rate with over 1500 new families registering each month as members. 

Support from Sodexo has been vital in the expansion of our work and I'm excited our continued partnership with them will enable us to continue to grow and help more members. 

We are also grateful to Business in the Community, who has supported this partnership throughout. Their input has been invaluable in keeping us on track and facilitating regular partnership meetings.” 

Michelle Brannen, Program Manager North for BITC, commented: 

The partnership between Sodexo and TBBT has been a pleasure to watch evolve. Both parties have listened to each other during many brokered meetings with BITC and have created clear and creative objectives which have benefited both organisations

By working alongside TBBT, Sodexo will gain further grass root knowledge on food insecurity issues building on the understanding and research of the Stop Hunger Foundation and creating a process for others within the hospitality industry to work towards changing in the future.” 

Sodexo is a founding partner of the Stop Hunger Foundation active in 40 countries around the world. In the UK and Ireland, Sodexo volunteers work alongside charities and organisations, donating time, skills, and money to tackle food insecurity and the root causes by promoting life skills in local communities. 

Since 2010, the Stop Hunger Foundation has donated more than £3.4 million to charities tackling hunger and malnutrition.

Elior UK supports the Natasha Allergy Research Foundation’s first clinical trial #

Contract caterer Elior UK is proud to support The Natasha Allergy Research Foundation’s first clinical trial to help achieve its mission ‘to make allergies history’. If successful, this will empower the NHS to provide cost-effective treatments for people living with food allergies.
The three-year £2.2m oral immunotherapy trial will be the first major study funded by the Natasha Allergy Research Foundation which was set up by Nadim and Tanya Ednan-Laperouse, parents of Natasha who died, aged 15, from a severe food allergic reaction.
Children and young people with milk and peanut allergies will be recruited for the immunotherapy trial.  The trial aims to show that everyday foods containing peanut or milk, which are taken carefully according to a standardised protocol under medication supervision, can be used as an alternative to expensive pharmaceutical drugs to desensitise patients.
Catherine Roe, CEO of Elior UK, said: “We are delighted to be a Founding Partner of the Natasha Allergy Research Foundation and to support Tanya and Nadim in their important work changing the way we manage allergies.
“At Elior UK we fully understand the challenges and complexities of catering for people with food allergies and are keen to do all we can to limit those risks. We recognise that to eliminate or reduce life threatening reactions would make life so much safer and easier for those who live with these daunting threats and this new immunotherapy trial could be positively life changing for millions of people in the future
On the launch of the trial, Tanya said: “We have been determined that Natasha’s death should not be in vain. Following the successful implementation of Natasha’s Law, which has brought new ingredient and allergen labelling, we are delighted to announce the first Natasha clinical trial and we would like to thank Elior UK and our other founding partners for their support.”
Nadim added: “This is a major step in our mission to make food allergies history. The aim is to save lives and prevent serious hospitalisations by offering lifelong protection against severe allergic reactions to foods.
“The study aims to plug the current oral immunotherapy research gap by proving that everyday foods can be used as a practical treatment for children and young adults with allergies and at a fraction of a cost to the NHS
The trial will be funded by a gift to the University of Southampton from The Natasha Allergy Research Foundation. The trial is supported by Elior UK and other founding partners which include Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Co-op, Lidl, Morrisons, Greggs, Pret A Manger, Costa Coffee, Burger King, KFC, Just East, Bakkavor, Bidfood, Leon, Cooplands and Uber Eats. 
The trial will be led by researchers at the University of Southampton and University Hospital Southampton NHS Foundation Trust partnering with Imperial College London, both World Allergy Organisation Centres of Excellence, together with University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust, Newcastle University and Sheffield’s Children’s Hospital.

e-f group sign-up 157 new sites in partnership with charity care provider Methodist Homes (MHA) #

e-f group are delighted to announce their new partnership with MHA, the UK’s largest charitable care provider, and after a six-month tender process e-f group were awarded a 3-year contract.
The partnership will see e-f group work closely with MHA’s 157 sites to deliver best value, industry leading systems and best in class support across all their food and non-food purchasing needs using their intelligent software solutions. MHA will be using e-f groups’ purchasing system, ‘Freshmarkets’ to benefit from best value across their network of suppliers, consolidated invoicing, and bespoke BI reporting to monitor spend across all sites. MHA is also utilising their menu management and costing system, ‘CaterCloud,’ which will support their chefs in delivering nutritionally balanced and compliant menus whilst controlling budgets and cost per resident.
MHA is the largest charitable care provider for older people in the UK, offering high quality care, accommodation, and support services. Their dedicated team of staff and volunteers provide care and support through specialist care homes, thriving retirement living and vibrant community groups.
e-f group currently specialise in procurement and menu management software for the care sector, with leading software solutions that have a key share of the UK market. Freshmarkets, a brilliantly simple purchasing solution that has, over the years, gone from food to non-food procurement, now a ‘one stop’ shop and CaterCloud, next-generation allergen, nutrition, menu planning and costing system that enables caterers to stay on top of food safety, deliver compliance and maintain cost controls.
Karl Evans, National Hospitality Manager at MHA, commented “It has been an extremely worthwhile exercise in having e-f group being awarded the contract for MHA. We had outlined our detailed requirements covering differing areas from procurement, software, and digital support to ease the processes for our staff, customer service and ultimately continue to improve the quality of food for our residents. We also want to ensure that as an organisation we are adhering to legislative requirement as well as utilising technology which supports our growth and cost effectiveness whilst meeting the varied needs of our residents’ dietary requirements within our homes.”
Stephen Gallagher, Healthcare Director at e-f group said, “We are thrilled with this new partnership with MHA, and we look forward to helping them achieve their business goals moving forward and collaborating to drive improvements and change in the sector.
Deployment officially went live on the 24 January and has been highly successful. e-f group are thrilled about this new partnership, and with an already impressive portfolio of satisfied care clients, they are committed to ensuring excellence in their offering.

GARDEN GOURMET launches the sensational Cumberland Sausage to all food operators #

From April 2022, GARDEN GOURMET® SensationalTM Cumberland Sausage is available to all food operators. After being served across Whitbread 1,200 pub, restaurant and hotel sites in the UK for the last few months, the sausage is now available for all those operators willing to include plant-based options that do not compromise on taste, texture and versatility in their breakfast and brunch menus and beyond.
The Sensational Cumberland Sausage is high in protein, a source of fibre, non-HFSS (non-high fat, sugar or salt), meets 2024 salt targets and has no red FoP (front of pack) traffic lights making them a great plant-based option for your menus.  These credentials showcase responsible nutrition. 
Alongside the launch of its Sensational Cumberland Sausage, GARDEN GOURMET®, within Nestlé Professional, is offering food operators support to optimise the plant-based dishes in their menus and provide detailed nutritional information for the recipes created by our development chefs. This will help operators to update their menus for the new calorie labelling regulations. Thanks to a wide variety of healthy2 recipes and the expertise of GARDEN GOURMET® menu development chefs, operators can identify the right plant-based products and dishes for their operational needs and for their customers’ taste.
Darren Chapman, Nestlé Business Development Chef, says: “According to social media insight gathered during January, consumers value having a wide plant-based selection when dining out and believe that wider selections will actually influence more people to reduce their meat intake. Whether this is driven by beliefs, health or sustainable choices, we can see the appetite is there and it is important to have these options on the menu. This means it is key to have a good proposition, which checks off health[2], sustainability[3], functionality, taste and texture. We work with our customers to help them achieve this. More importantly now, with the new regulation, we offer them detailed nutritional information that they need to display in their menus.”
Hannah Baugh, Nutrition Manager at Nestlé UK&I, adds: “At Nestlé, we have been making plant-based products for 30 years, and we have a large worldwide R&D network dedicated to new product development. When the team developed the GARDEN GOURMET® range, nutrition was a key consideration so that people who wanted to swap or reduce their meat intake would have an easier transition to a plant-based alternative. This meant that, rather than retrofitting meat alternatives to meet requirements, we decided on the nutritional targets of GARDEN GOURMET® products right at the start of the product development process.”
GARDEN GOURMET® now offers a diverse range that includes ‘Sensational’ burgers, mince, meat-style balls, fillet pieces and the recently launched nuggets and breaded fillets. Versatile enough for use in a diverse range of dishes, they’re great for providing options for vegans, flexitarians and curious diners. The cook-from-frozen format means minimal food waste for food operators and, for those aspiring to reduce their carbon footprint, GARDEN GOURMET® has pledged to be carbon neutral by the end of 2022.
For details on their range, available via OOH through wholesalers, go to https://www.Nestlé

A Majestic Palace fit for a Queen' Bestway invests a quarter of a £million to celebrate the Queen's Platinum Jubilee #

Following the success of Bestway’s ‘Your Home This Christmas’ campaign, Bestway has launched a major promotional campaign for the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, across all its nationwide depots, representing over a quarter of a million £ of investment.

In collaboration with key suppliers, the ‘Majestic Palace’ campaign has been designed to create theatre, fun, and visual appeal – and sees a large, pre-fabricated palace opening its doors within the main thoroughfare of its depots surrounded by chariots, horseman guards and, of course, the Queen’s ‘Jewels’.

Retailers can enjoy visiting the amazing majestic palace which spreads Summer Jubilee cheer and gives an immersive, impactful and emotional experience. There are branded individual rooms in the palace with key product pallets from suppliers including Heineken, Coca-Cola, Britvic, Mars Pet and Nestlé. There will also be ‘Tobacco Rooms’ with tobacco and vape products from suppliers including Imperial Tobacco, JTI and Juul.

Large digital screens will highlight special products, retailer promotions and supplier content. The campaign will also be supported by a series of competitions including best depot display and various supplier competitions with some great prizes to win.

Bestway is also supporting The Queen’s Green Canopy Initiative by inviting suppliers to support retailers by sponsoring the planting of trees in their area.  Bestway has confirmed that it will match all donations made by suppliers.

The promotion will run until the Queen’s Jubilee Bank Holiday on Friday 3 June.

Kenton Burchell, Trading Director at Bestway said,
We’re looking to create more theatre and excitement in the depot for our cash and carry customers. If we can generate that level of enthusiasm and inspiration with the retailer in depot, then they’ll get behind it in store, which will help grow their sales.”

Burchell added:
The key is having the right product at the right price and having the theatre to bring it to life. These things co-exist. One thing on its own is not going to optimise the opportunity.”

The ‘Your Home at Christmas’ campaign led to an estimated 20% increase in sales.

Food and drink menus get bigger and prices rise +2.5% in Q1 2022 #

According to data from Lumina Intelligence’s Menu Tracker, menus across the UK eating and drinking our market have grown in size and average prices have increased between February and April 2022.

Food prices on menus increase +2.5% since February
On average, the price of a dish on operator menus is £6.97, +2.5% since February 2022. Coffee & sandwich shop prices have increased by +4.8% from February to April 2022, the largest rise across the market versus chain restaurants (+2.2%), pubs and bars (+3.1%) and QSR (-0.3%).
Mains and sides are seeing the largest amount of inflation at +7.1% and +7.7%, respectively. The average cost of a chain restaurant main has increased by +£1.34 (+12.0%) from February-April 2022, as operators focus increases on the most commonly purchased courses.

Drink prices on menus increase +1.9% since February
The price of drinks on menus has risen by +1.9% from February to April 2022, with coffee & sandwich shops implementing the largest rises.
Increases are currently focused on the non-alcoholic drinks category, with operators capitalising on seasonal events including Easter and the beginning of Spring by launching more expensive drink ranges.

Alcoholic drinks in pubs & bars rose in price by +2.4% in the period.

Size of operator menus increase +1.8%
Menus across restaurants, pubs & bars, QSR and sandwich & coffee shops have an average of 132 food and drink items, up +1.8% from February to April 2022.

Pubs and bars have the largest offering across both food and drink menus (219 items on average), with large offerings of spirits, wines and burgers, up +1.4% versus February 2022. Item counts in chain restaurants have increased +5.6% to 123 and QSR +4.3% to 79. In contrast, item counts in sandwich & coffee shops has declined -2.3% to 107.

Growth is being driven by drinks, as operators expand ranges to tempt consumers into purchasing drinks to boost average spend. Pubs & bars have on average 127 drink items on menus, up +0.8% from February to April 2022

Commenting on the findings, Senior Insight Manager at Lumina Intelligence, Katherine Prowse, said: “Price increases are being driven by food menus overall. Operators are passing price rises on as a result of the inflation surrounding food costs from the war in Ukraine, spike in cost of fuel and supply shortages. With inflation expected to continue to rise, operators face a significant challenge around managing costs and attracting footfall, as consumers monitor their expenses as the cost of living continues to increase. Using our data, we will keeping a very close eye on this trend.

Find out more about Lumina Intelligence’s Menu Tracker here.