Members’ News

April 2023

John Cunningham announced as the FEA's new Chief Executive #

The Foodservice Equipment Association (FEA) has appointed its new Chief Executive, John Cunningham, who will be taking over the role from departing CE Keith Warren.

John's career has given him extensive leadership experience in some of the world's most prominent professional and trade associations including the Recruitment and Employment Confederation (REC), the Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT), the Chartered Institute of Personnel & Development (CIPD) and more recently as Regional Head of Education for Europe & Americas at the Association of Certified Chartered Accountants (ACCA). These roles have given him excellent expertise in areas like strategic planning, commercial partnerships, governance, financial and risk management as well as operational delivery and membership engagement and representation at the highest levels of business.

He also has strong links and experience within the hospitality sector thanks to his previous role as Director of Professional Development at the Institute of Hospitality.

John will take over the role in April 2023. Keith Warren will be working with him part-time on an advisory basis to ensure a smooth handover and deliver continuity of service and expertise for FEA and its members.

"John's credentials are second to none," says Keith. "His experience will allow FEA to continue serving the interests of its members at the standards they expect, and he will continue to drive the culture of innovation that allows us to respond to the ever-changing challenges our sector faces."

This includes the strategic objective of membership growth, the circular economy and its implications for the sector, service development and further growth of FEA's training and education programmes.

These challenges are one of the big attractions of the role for John. "As the foodservice equipment industry continues to face important issues like the ongoing effects of Brexit, the drive towards Net Zero and the ongoing march of technology, FEA's work will only increase in importance," says John. "I am really excited about the role, I see opportunity in every corner of the foodservice equipment sector and I am looking forward to engaging with our members and finding new ways to meet their needs."

FEA chair Paul Anderson said, "We were delighted with the quality and quantity of applicants for the role which signifies the profile and status of the association. The Board shortlisted and interviewed four from twenty four original applicants. John demonstrated significant strategic and operational insight which he can put to good effect as Chief Executive. The Board are delighted with the appointment which will ensure the delivery of the operational services to members; the effective management and direction of the secretariat team of four, whilst ensuring that FEA remains at the forefront of the policy developments for our industry in the UK and Europe." 

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 extends 15-year partnership with Queen’s Hospital, Romford for a further five years #

Sodexo has had its catering, retail and soft services FM contract at Queen’s Hospital, Romford extended for a further five years. Sodexo will implement new portering and cleaning technology as part of the contract extension. 

Sodexo has delivered the soft FM services at the hospital since 2006 as part of the PFI contract with ProjectCo and Barking, Havering and Redbridge University Hospitals NHS Trust. 

The £140m contract extension builds on Sodexo’s strong partnership with ProjectCo and the Trust and creates a sound base for further investment and development of both clinical services and infrastructure enhancements. 

Protecta, an evidence-based infection prevention approach, has been launched at the hospital to promote and support the adoption of best practices in cleaning and decontamination in the hospital, helping them to fight against healthcare acquired infections (HCAIs) and meet the National Standards of Healthcare Cleanliness.  

New portering technology will be implemented by Sodexo which will improve patient flow, particularly within the Emergency department. 

To improve sustainability and support the Trust with its Net Zero targets Sodexo deployed its WasteWatch programme in 2021 which has to date reduced food waste by 64% (4,701kg), saving the equivalent of 8,637 meals and preventing 33 metric tonnes of CO2 output. 

Top drive towards Net Zero, Sodexo has changed their waste partner, who are able to provide a local processing service, which has significantly reduce transport mileage and therefore significantly reduce CO2 emissions. 

The Sodexo team successfully delivered a number of emergency projects through the Covid-19 periods to improve the critical provision, which included upgrading the VIE oxygen system to make Queen’s Hospital one of the most resilient hospitals using piped oxygen in the country, installing a completely new, state of the art ITU ward and converting an area of the Emergency Department into a new welfare space for doctors, nurses, and support staff to help support their wellbeing through rapidly changing circumstances. These projects were delivered during the pandemic whilst maintaining infection prevention compliance and ensuring staff and patient safety levels. Sodexo will also be delivering a number of other significant and business critical projects over the coming years.

Philip Leigh, CEO Sodexo Healthcare, UK & Ireland said: “We are delighted to extend our contract at Queen’s Hospital, Romford.  We will continue to work closely with the Trust to improve patient flow and support its objective to support early discharge from hospital. Patient experience is at the heart of what we do and we look forward to working with the Trust in the delivery of a number of significant projects planned over the coming years.” 

The Sodexo team at Queen’s Hospital have received a number of industry awards including highly commended in the healthcare project of the year category at the Partnership Awards 2021, the AHCP 2021 domestic team of the year and patient dining manager Karen Ford-Sneddon receiving the healthcare catering award at the Contract Catering Awards 2022.

Bestway Group’s Well Pharmacy announces acquisition of Lexon UK and Asurex #

Bestway Group subsidiary Well Pharmacy is pleased to announce the acquisition of Lexon UK Holdings and Asurex Limited, a family-owned pharmaceutical wholesaler with five depots in Redditch, Leeds, Durham, East Kilbride and Dublin and a network of community pharmacies across the Midlands, Northwest, and Northeast of England.
Lexon is a family-owned business which has been in operation for over 25 years. It operates primarily as a pharmaceutical wholesaler serving 3,000 retail pharmacy customers across the UK and Eire from five sites. The business also operates 42 community pharmacies (currently trading as Knights Pharmacy) and is also a specialist developer and manufacturer of generic pharmaceuticals and is a data and solutions provider to pharmacy.
The acquisition will be notified to the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA). Both parties have proactively engaged with the CMA in pre-notification discussions and look forward to continuing to do so productively during the CMA review period.
The Honourable Haider Choudrey, Bestway Group CFO, said: “Through this acquisition we seek to augment our growth momentum and bring in even greater benefits to both community pharmacies and patients. Well Pharmacy had been searching for a target to expand its footprint and complement its growth trajectory and we are confident that Lexon fits this criterion.”
Seb Hobbs, CEO Well Pharmacy, said: “We’re delighted to be welcoming the 1,200 strong team at Lexon and Asurex to Well and the broader Bestway family, and are excited at the chance to grow our business to support even more customers and patients than ever before. We know that Lexon share our ethos as a values-orientated family business and that by bringing together our expertise we will be able to grow all aspects of our business by building on each other’s strengths. These are incredibly challenging times for community pharmacy, so we’re really pleased to be able to have an opportunity to show our commitment to the sector, now and into the future.”
Anup Sodha, who remains Managing Director at Lexon, said: “Colleagues should look forward to a bright future, with the added security of being part of a larger group with the investment, opportunities and benefits that will provide. Both businesses, being independent and family-owned, share similar cultural values and have the common goal of providing exceptional service and value to pharmacy, our patients and our supply chain.”

Anand Sodha will remain within the business to ensure the smooth integration of all the Norchem Pharmacies into the Well group, while Nimesh Sodha will continue to lead Key Pharmaceuticals.

Anup said of the changes: “We’d like to thank Pritesh Sonpal, Nitin Sodha and Pankaj Sodha, who have all decided that this is the time for them to step away from the business. They have all made a considerable impact on our success as a business and will be missed.”
Seb Hobbs added: “We are excited and ready for the challenges ahead. We are committed to listening and learning from each other as we build a stronger company which benefits all stakeholders and improves the lives of our patients and customers.”

Eight award-winning south west chefs unite for charity polo day #

Michelin-starred chef Hywel Jones joins leading chefs from the south-west to raise money for Hospitality Action

On Sunday 3rd September some of the country’s most talented and admired chefs will return to Beaufort Polo Club, Gloucestershire after a four year hiatus to cook up a storm at the much-missed Hospitality Action South West Polo Day.
The Polo Day, sponsored by Journey Hospitality, is supported by a number of local establishments, including eight award-winning South West chefs; the Michelin-star Hywel Jones of Lucknam Park, the Michelin-star Rob Potter of The Manor House, Great British Menu star Elly Wentworth of The Angel, Richard Davies of Calcot & Spa, Chris Cleghorn of The Olive Tree, Ricki Weston of Whatley Manor Hotel & Spa and Martin Blake and Michael Topp of The Royal Crescent Hotel & Spa who will provide the day’s cream tea.
Each chef will contribute towards a dazzling three-course meal, with two chefs taking on the same course to provide a unique twist to the day’s service. The event will begin with a Taittinger Champagne and canapé reception on the lawns of the prestigious Beaufort Polo Club before lunch is prepared. Grandstand seats will be reserved for guests to watch the exhilarating polo before the day ends with an afternoon cream tea prepared by newcomers to the event, Martin Blake and Michael Topp. Guests will also have the chance to join the prize draw and auctions to get their hands on exclusive experiences and overnight stays, with all proceeds being donated to Hospitality Action.
This will be Hospitality Action’s twelfth South West Polo Day which was last held pre-pandemic in September 2019. Alongside headline sponsors Journey Hospitality, the day is supported by Hatch Mansfield, Total Produce and Jongor Hire amongst others. The funds raised will be distributed to those in the hospitality industry on the brink of poverty or suffering from poor mental health due to the skyrocketing cost of living crisis. So far this year Hospitality Action has seen a 12% increase in applications received compared to the corresponding period in 2022 and a 67% increase on the same period in 2021.
Simon Bullingham, Founder and CEO of Journey Hospitality said, "We're very proud to be sponsoring the Hospitality Action Polo Day. The event is a great opportunity to celebrate our industry and raise funds for an important cause. As part of our ongoing commitment to support the hospitality industry, Journey has also pledged to donate £0.50 from every table booking on our onejourney® ecommerce platform to raise support for some of the most vulnerable people in our industry."
Mark Lewis, Chief Executive of Hospitality Action, said: “Since 2009 the Polo Day has been the crowning glory of our events programme. We are thrilled to return to Beaufort Polo Club after so long, and we expect the event to sell out in record time. The day is a real team effort and brings together the best of South West hospitality. I am extremely grateful to all those who have lent a hand and consistently make the Polo such a tremendous success. Needless to say, we are all very much looking forward to September 3rd”.

Tickets for the Polo Day at Beaufort Polo Club are limited and cost £130 per person or £1,300 for a table of 10 and are available from the Hospitality Action website -
Calcot & Spa and Whatley Manor Hotel and Spa have a limited number of rooms at a discounted rate for this event.

For sponsorship opportunities, contact Lou Hewitt:
To find out more about Hospitality Action and upcoming events visit:
For press enquiries, please contact Giuliana Vittiglio:

RSPCA Assured offers assurance to public as free-range eggs are back on shelves #

The bird flu housing order will be lifted meaning free-range birds can go back outside

For over two months shoppers have been unable to buy free-range eggs*, and instead have only seen ‘barn eggs’ on shelves, as the derogation which allowed them to still be labelled free-range (despite the birds being housed indoors since November), ended in February.

However, tomorrow, Tuesday 18 April the current housing order will be lifted in England, Wales, Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland, as the risk of bird flu, whilst still in circulation, has now reduced. This means free-range poultry farmers can let their birds back outside after five months of being housed indoors to protect them from the disease.

Dr Kate Norman, RSPCA’s laying hen welfare expert, said: “We know that many people were really concerned when they could no longer buy free-range eggs. UK shoppers have a good level of awareness about how laying hens have been cared for thanks to clear labelling on eggs, so the news that hens will be let back outside will be welcomed by many.”

The UK has faced one of the worst outbreaks of Avian Influenza (AI), ever seen. Sadly, an estimated three million laying hens have been culled due to bird flu since 2021, which accounts for around seven percent of the industry’s birds. This is why the compulsory housing order was put in place to protect more birds from becoming ill or dying but thankfully this risk has now significantly reduced.

All poultry will be allowed outside now that the housing order has been lifted, including meat chickens and turkeys. However, the rules around marketing free-range products differ for turkey and chicken.* 

Kate added: “Providing birds with outdoor access gives them the freedom to express a greater range of natural behaviours, which is why we’re really pleased that the housing order has been lifted. However, given birds have been kept indoors for the last five months, and therefore haven't been used to going outside, they may initially express signs of fear and stress when they are first let outside.In response, we have issued advice to farmers on ways to encourage hens out on the range and how to minimise their stress. 

“This includes creating shelters and structures for them to use on the range and natural cover as well as providing areas for them to dustbathe, forage and perch to encourage them out of the barn.

“Animal welfare is at the heart of what we do so whether the hens are indoor or outdoors, when shoppers look for the RSPCA Assured label, they can be reassured that the hens have been cared for to higher welfare standards. This means they are 100% cage-free and have access to perches and plenty of enrichment

For more information on RSPCA Assured products, visit: 

Rising industry talent shines through in Toque D'Or heats shortlist #

As Toque d’Or’s 35th anniversary competition hots up, Nestlé Professional today announced the shortlist of college students who have made it through into the Heats. Taking place at Nestlé HQ during 15-18th May 2023, the Heats will host 48 FOH and BOH students. With several days crammed with challenges and expert mentoring, every entrant that makes it through is set to enjoy a learning experience of a lifetime.
Open to Back and Front of House students on *Levels 2, 3 or 4, nearly 400 registrations have been received as part of the entry stage of this year’s Toque d’Or. To qualify, students had to record and upload a 30-second video to YouTube, explaining their passion for hospitality and reasons for entering Toque d’Or. In addition, BOH entrants prepared and cooked a piece of sustainable fish, submitting a menu description and photos of the mise-en-place, fish knife skills, and final dish. FOH students laid up a table inspired by a theme of their choice and created a coffee drink inspired by the same theme. They then submitted a drink description and photos of the mise-en-place (with drink ingredients), final drink, and laid-up table.
Colleges with shortlisted students for the Heats include:

Edinburgh College
University College Birmingham
Sheffield College, City Campus
Westminster Kingsway College
Nottingham College
New City College Redbridge
Kirklees College
Newcastle College
Ayrshire College
North Hertfordshire College
Midkent College
New City College
MK College
Cheshire College South and West
Hugh Baird College
City of Glasgow College
Coleg Cambria
Cardiff and Vale College
South Cheshire College
York College
152 Hardwick Lane
West Notts College
Middlesbrough College 

Katya Simmons, managing director Nestlé Professional UK&I said: “Each and every year of the competition, I’m taken aback by the level of passion, skill and commitment shown in people’s entries. It’s a real privilege to see and reaffirms how much future talent we have to look forward to as an industry. 
“I’m delighted to welcome all the shortlisted candidates to the next stage of the competition, the heats. The bar has been set extremely high and exceeded our expectations, so we’re excited to see how the rest of the competition shapes up. We hope all the incredible action that unfolds over the coming weeks and months has a positive ripple effect, inspiring others to think differently about the wonderful world of hospitality and the career opportunities available. Good luck to all the 2023 competitors!

Those competing in BOH at the National Heats will learn how to create nutritious and sustainable plant-based dishes during a series of masterclasses delivered by judges Louisa Ellis, MasterChef: The Professionals, The Festive Knockout winner; Justin Clarke, Development Chef at Nestlé Professional; and Paul Fletcher, Senior Quality & Innovation Chef at Whitbread.
As the competition gets ready to heat up, Paul Fletcher said: “Plant-based food has become a crucial part of people’s diets as consumers seek more sustainable and healthier lifestyles.  It’s our responsibility as chefs to continue to innovate in this space and we look forward to seeing how the students rise to the challenge.”
Front of House competitors will learn barista and wine skills from judges Raul Diaz, wine expert and Founder of Wine Training School; Ryan Burke, Head of Training for Hot Beverages at Nestlé Professional; and Sophie Taylor, 2021 FOH Toque d’Or winner now chef de partie at the Gleneagles Townhouse. Students will then work together as a team to serve lunch to guests before receiving feedback on food, drinks and the overall service.
Commenting ahead of the Nationals Heats, Raul Diaz said: “We’re looking for people who demonstrate real passion about the art of hospitality, from delivering great customer service to understanding and confidently explaining food and wine pairings to guests. The Heats are going to be both challenging and rewarding for the students and I’m excited to see the action unfold!”
To see the full list of shortlisted entrants for the Heats, please visit:

Crunch-time for eating and drinking out market as consumers seek affordable options #

Weekly eating and drinking out frequency in the UK has declined by -6.7% year-on-year, according to the latest report from Lumina Intelligence's Eating and Drinking Out Panel. The decline comes as consumers alter their behaviour in response to the current cost of living crisis.

The total market penetration has increased by +2ppts to 57% of UK adults having an eating or drinking out occasion in the 4 weeks ending 19 March 2023. The growth reflects more consumers returning to pre-pandemic norms, including commuting, and working away from home, highlighting that more consumers are having eating and drinking out occasions, but are doing so less frequently.

When consumers are having occasions, they are opting for lower spend visits. The report highlights that the dinner day-part has seen a decline in occasion share by-1.4ppts year-on-year, with all other day-parts benefiting. This shift is partly driven by the recovery in daytime occasions, as more consumers are out and about during the day, as well as a consumer effort to reduce out of home occasions at the most expensive day-part.

This realignment of day-part shares has impacted average spend growth, which is just +2.6%, notably behind inflation figures. Consumers are becoming more price-sensitive and are seeking more affordable options when dining out.
The report also reveals that restaurants have failed to attract a notable boost in occasions, even with the occurrence of Mother's Day during the 2023 data period. The restaurant channel share of occasions has declined by -0.8ppts year-on-year, with retail increasing its share of occasions by +1.7ppts to 13.4%. Retail's increase reflects growth in the proportion of consumers seeking out affordable and on-the-go food and drinks out of home.

Commenting on the findings, Senior Insight Manager Katherine Prowse said:

"The cost-of-living crisis is having a notable impact on the eating and drinking out market. Consumers are adjusting their behaviour and seeking more affordable options when out, resulting in a decline in average spend growth and a shift in day-part shares. Restaurants, in particular, are facing challenges in attracting customers, as retail continues to grow its share of occasions. These insights provide valuable information to operators in the market, allowing them to adapt their offerings and strategies to meet changing consumer needs and behaviours."

Providing a vital service to retailers five years of year-on-year growth for Bestway Vans #

Bestway has announced that five years after launch, Bestway Vans Direct has delivered another phenomenal year with 7% year-on-year customer growth providing a valuable lifeline service to retailers.

Despite immensely challenging trading conditions, such as national lockdowns, supply chain disruptions and market-place cost pressures, the business has continued to grow consistently every year with retailers saying this is a highly valued service to their business.

Bestway Vans Direct, is a part of the Bestway Wholesale family and is a syndicated salesforce that operates in two bespoke business units.   Bestway Snacks operates for key suppliers in the Crisps, Snacks and Biscuit category whilst Bestway Sweets operates for key suppliers in the confectionery category.

Through strong instore relations, team expertise in merchandising, category advice, and market leading iPad technology, Bestway Vans bring to life supplier plans in over 21,000 independent retailers every working day of the year, placing more than 25,000 pieces of point-of-sale equipment each year.
Bestway Vans is now forecast to turn over more than £80m in 2023. 

According to Bestway Vans director, Dan Lewis, the Vans division’ ethos is to help its customers sell more, make more, and save more!   

He says:
Our ethos is working.  We are selling more, and helping our retailers make more through offering them an agile service to keep the right products on shelves and turn orders around quickly.

“The business is in great shape and I’m really proud of what the team has achieved across the last five years during what has to be the toughest trading conditions the market has seen in decades

Bestway Vans offers an agile and much needed service.  Its vans make just-in-time deliveries, stocking up its vans from 34 Bestway and Batleys depots nationwide, every weekday before hitting the road.  Each Bestway Vans Customer Sales Representative (CSR), visits more around 18 customers each day to make an order, and grow in store range whilst stocking up their shop instantly from the van. 

Dawood Pervez, Managing Director for Bestway Wholesale, expressed his delight at the performance of the Van’ sales division over the last five years, adding that it has given the Bestway Wholesale business a unique point of difference in the market.  

He also commented that he was delighted see that the business has added 56 custom-designed vans to its fleet as part of its replacement and investment program to ensure Bestway Vans’ CSRs continue to provide world-class service to independent retailers:

We know from listening to our customers that Bestway Vans provides an agile, much needed services. 

“If we look back to ‘the beginning’ in 2017, insight showed that delivered wholesale had increased 30% in ten years reaching £11.3bn versus only a 20% increase in cash and carry.

“This highlighted the need to increase delivered initiatives evidencing an increase in the wholesale market overall

Bestway Vans Direct offers retailers’ multiple supplier benefits including activating and access to NPD for sweets and snacks and other categories such as grocery, as well as siting POS in retail stores and carrying out surveys to provide valuable insight in products and market trends. 

Lewis confirms that the more retailers buy, the higher the discount they receive helping them to make more alongside highly competitive pricing:

With our Bestway Vans Direct, there is stock immediately available and placed in store, there is no charge for delivery or MOQ, and the internally owned iPad technology can transfer orders so that stock can be allocated, or customers shopping from a sweet van can benefit from a snacks van”. 

It’s a win-win service that is leading the market in terms of just-in-time deliveries and keeping products on shelves”.

Freemans Event Partners continues culinary expansion with two high-level hires #

Freemans Event Partners has strengthened its catering division with the appointment of Mark Bodley as Head of Catering and Lee Nicholls as Menu Development Manager.

The duo brings a wealth of experience in hospitality, contract catering and catering logistics. They join the Gloucester-based event specialists following a hugely successful 2022.

Mark’s experience across the hospitality and events landscape is hugely varied, having worked in fine dining and Michelin Star restaurants, contract catering and as an independent hospitality consultant and event manager. Mark was also involved with Team GB at their national sports centres, developing menus for the nation’s athletes around the Tokyo Olympics. Mark is a regular on food experts group panels that input on legislation around food safety, food hygiene, allergens, acrylamide, food enforcement and compliance issues. In his spare time, he also runs pop-up restaurant that focus on bringing fine dining into less accessible communities.

Mark’s remit as Head of Catering will see him work on diversifying the culinary offering within Freemans Event Partners as well as developing the value proposition around employee catering at events, ensuring that levels of customer experience are exceptional across the board and that products and practices are in keeping with the businesses’ sustainability goals.
Lee’s experience as a former serviceman spans over 20 years working as NATO’s senior global catering deployment manager and direct food safety advisor. During his time in the military, Lee also acted as a mentor for the combined services culinary arts team, assisting with the training and development of young talent within the Armed Forces.
As Menu Development Manager, Lee will focus on creating bespoke menus for Freemans Event Partners’ wide-ranging portfolio of clients, matching the spectator demographic. Lee’s remit will also cover how the business can further develop provenance and sustainability practices, by building out menus using suppliers and produce local to any given event.
Speaking of these appointments, Stephen Freeman; Chief Executive Officer at Freemans Event Partners, says: “Mark and Lee have a wealth of experience both across hospitality and within high volume catering environments.
“What they can bring to the business to enhance our culinary offering, is hugely exciting as it will lead to an even better visitor experience for our clients and their customers.
“Beyond their roles, each will be given the scope to explore different focuses and passions. Lee will be using his military background to explore how veterans can be supported in corporate catering roles, post-military. Mark will establish how we can approach recruitment on a far more hyper-local level, ensuring our operations are more strategic and greener

Compass Group UK & Ireland supports Change Please expansion #

Compass Group UK & Ireland, the UK’s largest food services company, has announced it is extending its current work with social enterprise, Change Please. The new collaborative agreement will see Compass operate retail sites on behalf of Change Please, with an ambition to enhance national coverage and together deliver a greater charitable impact.

Change Please invests 100% of its profits into helping people who are experiencing homelessness – providing them a living wage job, housing, training, and onward opportunities. They do this through their coffee sales.
Compass has supported the social enterprise through supplying its wholesale coffee offer for a number of years across hundreds of sites in six countries internationally. Willen Lakes is the first unit to open under the new collaborative agreement between Change Please and Compass Group UK&I, with trading beginning in late March 2023.
Compass is committed to supporting Change Please’s mission through the provision of trainee work placements and the potential of ongoing employment for homeless people in all of the new sites in which the organisations work in together. 
Commenting on the new collaborative agreement, Andrew Jones, MD – One Retail, part of Compass Group UK & Ireland said: “We recognise that as part of the UK’s largest food and support services provider we have the power to make a difference in the communities in which we work. Supporting Change Please is part of ‘Our Social Promise’, where we have committed to provide opportunities for over a million people by 2030. By working across new retail opportunities for Change Please, we hope to enable help for some of the most vulnerable people in society, delivering social value within communities. This is an agenda that we are passionate about, but also our clients and our people are too.”
Cemal Ezal, founder of Change Please added: “Working with Compass to support our retail remit is a great opportunity for national expansion. With their expert, operational support we hope to grow our brand – in turn freeing up our expertise to help more homeless people and providing them with life changing skills and careers.”

The chance to make a difference at Sodexo Live! this summer #

More than 1,500 vacancies to fill at iconic venues and events across the UK

Sodexo Live!, the venue partner at some of the UK and Ireland’s most iconic music, cultural and sporting events, is gearing up for a busy summer season with the announcement of some 1,500 vacancies to help deliver world class hospitality and food services in style. 

Sodexo Live! teams deliver unforgettable experiences for thousands of customers each year across 47 diverse venues. 

The 2023 calendar for Sodexo Live! includes Eurovision at the M&S Bank Arena Liverpool, Royal Ascot, Henley Royal Regatta, and events scheduled at Fulham FC’s Craven Cottage, Brighton & Hove FC’s Amex stadium, St James’ Park in Newcastle and Scotland’s national stadium, Hampden Park in Glasgow. 

A host of roles are available across the country and Sodexo Live! is recruiting jobs at all levels from chefs to bar managers, cleaners and front of house staff, kitchen porters and supervisors to name a few. 

Rebecca Kane Burton, CEO of Sodexo Live! UK&I, said: “Sodexo Live! is a people business, which is why we are so committed to attaining, training and retaining the best talent. 

“We are thrilled to be on the hunt for 1,500 people to join the Sodexo Live! family, as we plan to deliver a packed summer of events and hospitality. 

“Our venues are truly iconic and unique places to work, offering excellent potential. Our colleagues are our experience makers. They get huge job satisfaction from interacting with customers and ensuring they have the most memorable experiences, whether partaking in a live show, sporting event or culinary experience.

“This is a great opportunity to grow your career and join our friendly team at a vibrant and busy Sodexo Live!

Sodexo Live! is committed to ensuring the highest levels of employee experience, and has recently launched its new People Ambition. It focuses on allowing each and every one to Belong to a team that feels like a family, to Act with purpose and to be inclusive, for each and everyone to Thrive in their career, and to Be Live in the moment creating exceptional memories.

For more information on working at Sodexo Live! and the jobs available see: Working at Sodexo Live!

Dipna Anand inspires and supports Compass’ apprentice chefs #

Compass Group UK & Ireland has teamed up with Dipna Anand to further enhance its culinary apprenticeship programmes, with the chef supporting a group of Level 2 and 3 apprentices with speciality cooking of Indian food.
Dipna is co-owner of the award-winning Brilliant Restaurant. Her love of food stems from three generations of chefs that have run The Brilliant Restaurant and have continued to produce award-winning, truly authentic food for over 40 years. Compass already has a partnership with Dipna across Levy UK + Ireland, who work with her to create a bespoke range of Punjabi food, alongside offering culinary training to some of their chefs. Within Compass’ Restaurant Associates business, Dipna works on training chefs, events and the collaboration has also seen the opening of her leading restaurant at Somerset House.
Widening this partnership, she will now work with a group of apprentices from across Compass’ various sectors to deliver Apprentice Culinary Workshops, teaching the cooking of Punjabi food. The workshops will take place at her Brilliant restaurant, covering everything from starters and snacks to Indian sauces, spices and curries. The sessions will be hands on learning, that Compass apprentices can take back to their own kitchens for customers and clients to enjoy.
Dipna Anand commented: “Working with Compass and apprentices is always great, they are talented, enthusiastic and hardworking – so I am thrilled to be taking on this role to support their development. I love teaching the next generation about the skills and techniques of cooking Punjabi food, so it’s wonderful to see such an engaged group taking part.”
Jonathan Foot, Head of Apprenticeships and Early Careers, Compass Group UK & Ireland: “It’s great to have Dipna support our apprenticeship programme in this way and give our apprentices another culinary experience, demonstrating the culture and diversity of food – which all adds to their learning.
At Compass, we are committed to ensuring the development of our people, and helping everyone learn and thrive – so Dipna is a truly great mentor for our people to learn from and I’d like to thank her for her support.
Dipna also plays an active role in Compass Group UK & Ireland’s Women in Food initiative, which aims to create a more inclusive culture in and out of the kitchen - attracting, retaining and developing female talent, and driving greater representation across all levels.
Last year, Compass launched Our Social Promise, an ambition to positively impact one million lives by 2030, through job creation, education, training, community and charitable engagement. Part of this strategy includes the development of its people, maximising training opportunities such as apprenticeships, mentoring, the graduate scheme and internal Career Pathways.
Compass now runs 40 different apprenticeships that cover everything from Culinary, Facilities, Business Management, Events, HR, Finance, IT/Digital, Sales and Procurement – they are developed to take candidates from level 2 up to level 6 and 7, degree equivalent.

Glebe Farm ramps up its out of home presence by securing major UK listings #

Glebe Farm, the fast-growing producer of gluten free oats and oat-based products, has secured major UK listings which will boost availability of its award-winning PureOaty oat drink range, allowing millions of people across the UK to access it.

As a second-generation family-owned farm run by sister and brother team, Rebecca and Philip Rayner, Glebe Farm has been dedicated to producing the highest quality of truly gluten free oats at their independent Cambridgeshire farm since 2010. This dedication has seen them gain nationwide recognition from some of the UK’s largest operators wanting to offer their customers – and in turn millions of people across the country – delicious vitamin and calcium rich oat drinks that cater for all dietary needs without sacrificing taste.

Notably one of the biggest wins for the business is securing a national core listing in Bidfood, the UK’s largest foodservice provider. This means that Glebe Farm’s PureOaty Barista oat drink will now be available to over 40,000 caterers and foodservice businesses around the country.

Another major win comes following a competitive tender process with Elior UK, one of the world’s leading contract caterers, which serves millions of people each day. As the only farm in the UK growing and milling gluten free oats, Glebe Farm beat many well-known competitors to become their sole oat drink provider.

Other significant new listings include Woods Foodservice (supplier to London’s finest establishments), JJ Foodservice (provides wholesale foods to thousands of businesses across the UK) and Dhamecha (one of the UK’s largest independent cash and carry wholesalers, serving over 16,000 independent retail and catering outlets).

Tony Holmes, Chief Operating Officer at Glebe Farm said:

We’re thrilled to be working with some of the UK’s largest foodservice businesses. As we continue to accelerate the business, these exciting new partnerships demonstrate our unrivalled ability to produce, at scale, high quality and delicious oat products to meet needs of operators right across the UK. It also highlights the increased demand that catering and hospitality firms, and retailers, are getting from their customers needing delicious gluten free products. This requirement to meet dietary needs comes as it’s estimated 10% of UK consumers now follow a gluten free diet.”

Phil Rayner, Co-owner and Managing Director of Glebe Farm, said: “Securing these listings gives us access to millions of people across the UK and these environments are where we can build real brand equity, driving a connection with our consumers, who can enjoy our products daily. We’re witnessing an increase in people diagnosed with allergies and intolerances in the UK, which is only going to increase over the years, along with the demand for premium products that can meet these health needs. These new listings prove that Glebe Farm can meet these increasing demands and will continue to grow to meet businesses and consumer’s needs.”

The Purest British Oats
Many of the oat-based products on supermarket shelves today are milled and manufactured at facilities that also process grains like wheat, barley or rye. This can lead to contamination of the oats meaning they lose their purity and become unsuitable for the 1 in 100 of people who are coeliac.

100% sown, grown, milled and packed in the UK, the farmers at Glebe Farm know where every single oat that goes into their products comes from. That means every oat is guaranteed to be of the best quality and 100% gluten-free. Even better, being British grown and produced means they have the lowest food miles on the market, making them the top choice for sustainable oat products.

And it’s not just oat drinks that Glebe Farm produce, the same pure British oats can be found in Glebe Farm’s own brand of gluten free porridge oats and granolas. Glebe Farm are also able to provide products and raw ingredients to the specification and scale required including their gluten free: jumbo oats, porridge oats, and oat flour.

NHS England team up with Compass for 24/7 Hospital Food event #

NHS England is collaborating with Compass’ Healthcare division, Medirest, and the newly launched One Retail sector, to host the NHS England 24/7 Hospital Food Showcase event. Held on 11th May 2023 at the Imperial War Museum in Duxford, it will bring together clinical staff wanting change, suppliers offering solutions and NHS Leaders leading the way on all subjects of Food Standards and 24/7.
The organisers - include Tim Radcliffe, NHS England, Chair of the 24/7 clinical panel and Haley-mae Downer Business Development Director for One Retail and panel member of NHS 24/7 clinical panel. They aim to share best practice and insights on the recently mandated 24/7 food provision, that hospitals need to be providing for hospital staff - as announced in the National Standards for Healthcare Food and Drink.

The event will see speakers including Philip Shelley, NHS England’s Chair of the NHS Review of Hospital Food; Neely Mozawala, Compass’ Social Value Lead and Founder of the campaign “No Hungry Staff”; as well as NHS Catering lead, Ian Howson on delivering 24/7 in the NHS.Together they will cover topics such as The Future of NHS catering and the implementation and innovation around the 24/7 food standard number eight. Alongside speakers, networking and round table discussions, there will be live cooking demonstrations and an exhibition of over 15 solution providers, including a full frictionless store concept.
Philip Shelley, NHS England’s Chair of the Hospital Food Review said: “This event is an opportunity for us to come together to share ideas, insights and best practice around how we can deliver 24/7 solutions in hospitals, that suit the demographics we need to cater for. When staff in hospitals are working long, busy shifts – it’s imperative that they have access to good quality food. Please come along and we can help drive this agenda forward together.
Neely Mozawala, Founder of the No Hungry Staff campaign and Compass Social Value Lead said: “If delivered well, this mandate will eradicate hunger, benefit the physical and mental wellbeing of NHS staff and in turn improve the quality of patient care. This is something I have been working on for a long time and I am dedicated to making it happen and supporting hospitals to implement it. That’s why I am looking forward to the event, so we can support hospitals up and down the country to deliver a great food offer, that is available all day every day.”

Elior UK honours its colleagues at its Awards for Excellence #

Leading contract caterer, Elior UK, celebrated the talent and commitment of colleagues from across the whole business at its 18th Awards for Excellence ceremony held last week at St George’s Hall in Liverpool.
Over 300 guests, including suppliers, clients and finalists, attended the ceremony which was hosted by author, journalist, adventurer and television presenter Simon Reeve. Guests were treated to a spectacular street food style lunch, designed by this year’s nine Culinary Competition finalists, with guests having the opportunity to visit each finalist’s food stand and then select their favourite in a live vote.
Justin Johnson, HR Director at Elior UK, said: “It was a fantastic day in Liverpool celebrating the success of all our finalists and winners at this year’s Elior Awards for Excellence. Thanking and recognising our colleagues for a job well done is a key part of our People Promise and this day is a great example of how we bring this to life.
Angela Rawson, Cook Supervisor for Taylor Shaw who won the ‘You Made a Difference’ award for her positive contribution to school children’s mealtimes, said: “It was amazing to be recognised and I feel so proud to have won the award for this category. I really love my job especially as I get a chance to contribute and make a difference to the children’s lunchtime experience on a daily basis.”
Winners of the 12 categories:
Business Development – Ben McEwen
Chef Award – Steven Snowdon
Culinary Competition - Jo Bishop
Innovation – Camille Rich
Inspiring Leadership – Angela MacIntyre
Operations Manager of the Year – Luan Telford
Safety Excellence – Julie Ross
Site Colleague of the Year – Sarah Wood
Support Services Colleague of the Year – Vicky Hope
Star Site - Linklaters
CSR & Social Value - Ildiko Sankhyan
You Made a Difference – Angela Rawson
The winner of the Culinary Competition, Jo Bishop from Lexington Catering, was decided by professional judges, which represented 75% of the vote, and by the live vote on the day. The judges were impressed by Jo’s varied and imaginative menu and her attention to detail and the ‘incredible taste’ of her dishes was highlighted and  praised both by the judges and guests at the event. 

Sodexo’s Michael Taylor wins Springboard Ambassador of the Year title #

Learning and development manager for Sodexo’s Government business, Michael Taylor was awarded the title of Ambassador of the Year at the Springboard Awards for Excellence 2023, held on 20 April at the East Wintergarden in Canary Wharf, London. 

Michael has been a Springboard Ambassador for around eight years supporting with the organisation’s FutureChef competition but also helping Springboard attract more people into the hospitality industry. 

Michael has continued to visit schools and colleges to talk to young people but has also looked at attracting new recruits from other groups such the over 50s, those with disabilities and the long-term unemployed to raise awareness of the career opportunities within the hospitality industry. Over the last year Michael has attended over 20 such events. 

Through Michael’s relationship with Foxes Academy, a training hotel and catering college for young people with learning disabilities, he has helped three students secure employment with Sodexo over the last year and last October organised a two-day Sodexo takeover of the college with colleagues providing practical skills lessons as well as the importance of reducing kitchen food waste. 

Working with Oxfordshire County Council Michael has helped seven young adults with learning disabilities find employment through the Ways to Work scheme. 

Michael said: “I am thrilled to receive this award. When I started out as an ambassador for Springboard I wanted to understand what I could do to attract more young people to this fantastic industry.  I love getting out and about, visiting schools, colleges, job centres and careers fairs to talk about all the opportunities the sector has to offer. The role is so rewarding, the FutureChef competition does not disappoint each year and developing partnerships with the likes of Aurora Foxes and Ways to Work is opening up some amazing opportunities for people to really build a career in hospitality.” 

Sean Haley, CEO Sodexo UK & Ireland and Springboard trustee said: “We are so proud of what Michael has achieved in his role as Springboard Ambassador. He is passionate about his role and we are delighted to welcome the new recruits he has supported. It is our ambition to provide an inclusive workplace for all, and through his dedication Michael is helping us fulfil that ambition. The hospitality sector is a huge and dynamic industry which is not always recognised. Thank you to Michael for his continued work, developing partnerships to help create a better everyday for everyone to build a better life for all.”

Latest MealTrak Results – 12 w/e 20 March 2023 (wave 112) #

Wholesale experts TWC Group, in partnership with food-to-go and out-of-home tracking programme MealTrak, reports the latest food-to-go market performance to 12 w/e 20 March 2023.
Latest results are as follows:

Latest MealTrak results show the number of out-of-home eating occasions were -1% lower than the comparable period in 2022, on a 52 week/MAT basis.
In the latest 12 weeks, the number of out-of-home eating occasions fell by -10% vs. the equivalent period in 2022.

In the last 12 weeks, occasions in the ‘eating out’ channel (comprising pubs, restaurants and hotels) declined by -2% vs. the previous year. Pubs continue to outperform the other sub-channels (+2%), ahead of restaurants (-6%) and hotels (-2%).

Total food to go occasions declined by -11% in the latest 12 weeks. This was driven by forecourts (-43%), transportation sites (-40%), sandwich shops and specialists (-24%), high street (-17%), coffee shops and cafés (-13%), workplace (-13%), fast food & takeaway (-12%) and independent convenience stores (-2%).

The discounters (+23%) and the multiples (+3%), with their more affordable food-to-go offer, remain the clear winners.

Value sales increased +8% on a 52 week/MAT basis; but were flat (+0%) on a 12-week ending basis versus 2022. 

Commenting on the results, Tom Fender, Development Director at TWC, said:
Out of home eating occasions continued to fall this period, with a decline of -10% in the latest 12 weeks. Interestingly, the ‘eating out’ sector is outperforming food-to-go currently, with a decline of -2% in the latest 12 weeks, vs. -11% for food to go occasions.”
“We continue to see an outperformance amongst those outlets offering more affordable options, namely the discounters – and to a lesser extent the multiple grocers. Discounters saw growth of +23% in the 12 w/e 20 March 2023.”
“Through the cost-of-living crisis, the discounters are performing strongly – with Aldi achieving a record grocery market share of 9.9% in 12 w/e 19 March 2023 and Lidl was the fastest growing supermarket over the same period (Source: Kantar Worldpanel).”

“The impact of the discounters on food-to-go can’t be ignored either. With enhanced ranges and an increase in quality through investment in better ingredients, improved packaging and more sustainable practices, the discounters are offering food to go that is not only affordable, but is also a convenient and credible option
Mealtrak is a vast data source so if you would like to know more of the detail behind these headlines, please contact Tom Fender at TWC ( for more information.

Talented baristas graduate with Company of Cooks, Gather & Gather and Vacherin #

Company of Cooks, Gather & Gather and Vacherin, together with social enterprise Well Grounded, have celebrated the achievements of 11 graduate baristas who have successfully completed an eight-week Specialty Barista Traineeship and are preparing to embark on their careers with the three hospitality businesses.

The successful collaboration trains, accredits and supports individuals facing barriers to employment into work. The programme provides technical coffee training and employability skills, with paid work placements at prestigious London sites within the portfolios of Company of Cooks, Gather & Gather and Vacherin, which are all part of CH&CO, and guaranteed work on completion.
The eight-week course is accredited by the Specialty Coffee Association, with each graduate gaining a professional barista qualification plus Level 2 in both Customer Service and Food Safety.

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

Their achievements were celebrated at a graduation ceremony in London that saw the graduates showcase their learnings through the brewing and serving of delicious coffee and sharing their inspiring personal journeys.

Rob Fredrickson, Managing Director for Company of Cooks, said: “Heartfelt congratulations to all the graduates. Over the eight weeks of the Specialty Barista Traineeship, they’ve shown incredible verve and determination, which has seen them develop professionally into talented, qualified baristas and personally as exceptional people with infinite potential.

“Our partnership with Well Grounded started in 2017 and underpins our commitment to the communities we work in and with, and to championing the hospitality industry as an exciting and rewarding career opportunity, attracting new talent and making a positive difference. We’re very proud to now have trained and enabled 68 brilliant baristas to work with us in our cafés and coffee shops across London, and I speak on behalf of my fellow MDs in Gather & Gather and Vacherin when I say we’re excited to welcome the latest cohort into our family and see where their careers take them.

Eve Wagg, Founder and CEO of Well Grounded, said: “This partnership embodies our values at Well Grounded: Collaboration, Diversity & Inclusion, Quality and Empowerment. Together with Company of Cooks, Gather & Gather and Vacherin we bring our individual areas of expertise together to create lasting impact; to provide a quality product, and to celebrate the power of what can be achieved individually and as a collective. It is about developing a new, exciting, diverse talent pipeline for the coffee industry but most of all it’s about empowerment. To empower each of us to grow and fulfil our potential - I believe everyone who is touched by this partnership is changed and today is a sign of how it impacts so many lives.

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. Since conception in 2016, it has supported over 320 people into work, with 83% sustaining work for over 6 months. 

‘Next’ Mexican spirits and Jordanian cuisine investigated by food trend experts, Insights Lab by Egg Soldiers #

Egg Soldiers, one of the UK’s top foodservice development agencies, recently embarked on a food tour of Amman, the capital city of Jordan in the Levant, with clients of its new food & drink trends service, Insights Lab, set to benefit from the unique culinary insights gleaned by its trusted team of chef experts.
Stefan Cosser, Co-founder and Managing Director of Egg Solders, said:

Levantine cuisine has been on the rise in the UK for a few years now, driven by consumer demand for new, vibrant, globally-inspired eating experiences – and it was amazing to experience authentic iterations first-hand in the Jordanian capital.”

“The team was in Amman for five days and, with so much to cover, it really was non-stop. Many of our clients are hot on street food, and for good reason, so we made a point of seeking out both traditional and innovative varieties of ka’ak, shawarma, fatteh and falafel around the beautiful, ancient city.

“A standout visit for us was Sufra, one of the best restaurants in the Middle East found in the city centre. Here we sampled fukharat - slow-baked clay pots full of meats and vegetables; a raft of both hot and cold mezze options; and also its Lamb Mansaf – a spectacular bone-on lamb leg with bulgur rice and Jameed, a fermented sheep’s yoghurt.

“Now back on UK soil, our Insights Lab is already hard at work translating the team’s unique insights into meaningful innovation thought-starters for UK brands across both retail and foodservice, delivered via our growing suite of bespoke services that help businesses convert trends into concepts that really reach consumers

‘Next’ Mexican spirits were also on the menu for Insights Lab this month, with the team identifying Sotol, Raicilla and Bacanora as new candidates for UK operators looking to capitalise on diversifying premium spirit trends.

Kateline Porritt, Head of Trends at Egg Soldiers, said: “With mezcal having taken the spotlight and settling neatly into drinks menus across the board as twisted classic cocktails or neat options (my personal favourite being a mezcal negroni); we expect to see a further emergence of regional subtypes of the Mexican spirit, with sotol, raicilla and bacanora now primed to enter the fray.

“As revealed in our free whitepaper - ‘UK Hospitality Food & Drink Trends To Watch 2023/24’ – Sotol will be first in line to benefit from ever-rising presence of traditional Mexican spirit options. Bright, grassy and with subtle pepper notes; Sotol's complex flavour profile will be used to great effect by cocktail bars in the UK, with the distilled, 38% ABV spirit made from the Dasylirion succulent (or Desert Spoon) rather than agave - a key differentiator from the norm.

Insights Lab by Egg Soldiers produces a monthly food trends newsletter, often posts free deep dives on its website, and provides detailed reports and immersive workshops to inspire NPD teams and drive innovation for UK foodservice businesses, with the team ready to assist on both short- and long-term innovation strategies.

Sodexo secures new four-year deal with BAE Systems Munitions #

Sodexo’s Corporate Services’ division has secured a four-year extension to its soft and hard FM contract with BAE Systems Munitions. The new contract has an estimated value of circa £16m over the four years. 

Sodexo has been delivering services for BAE System’s four Munitions locations since 2019.  The 60-strong Sodexo team has developed a strong relationship at each of the four sites, Washington, Tyne & Wear; Radway Green, Crewe; Glascoed, near Usk in south Wales and Hexham in Northumberland. 

The services delivered by Sodexo includes soft and hard FM services including the catering, cleaning, M&E planned and reactive works; external landscaping, building maintenance and at Glascoed, the largest of the sites Sodexo also provides employee uniform laundering. 

At Washington, Radway Green and Glascoed, Sodexo introduced its Kitchen Works Co. food offer in 2022 to provide breakfast and lunch to BAE Systems 1,200 plus employees at each of the sites staff restaurants. 

With employee engagement and wellbeing now a top priority, Sodexo has worked with BAE Systems to transform and expand its catering services, introducing new on-site pop-up catering points across BAE Systems locations. Meals are now produced in one of eight kitchens, which provides an enhanced dining experience for employees, enabling them to come together to eat, meet and connect. 

Kitchen Works Co. has been designed specifically to meet the needs of those working in manufacturing and takes its inspiration from modern quick service restaurants with a home from home feel. 

Julie Ennis, CEO Corporate Services, Sodexo UK & Ireland said: “Our team at BAE Systems Munitions has fostered a true partnership with the client across the four locations. Through their understanding of BAE System’s needs, and those of its people, we have become a valuable partner and extension to their Munitions business, and I am proud that their expertise and excellent service delivery has resulted in this four year extension.”

Tony Richards, Operations, SHE & Quality Director at BAE Systems Munitions added: “Since the contract started in 2019 the Sodexo team has become an integral part of the BAE Systems team. Their unwavering commitment to ensuring the smooth running of our facilities and wellbeing of our people throughout the global pandemic and beyond is one of the reasons we decided to extend the contract.” 

Sodexo’s Corporate Services business delivers workplace services, facilities management and food services to some of the world’s most recognisable brands. Its teams have expertise operating across a range of different environments in the corporate sector, including headquarters, regional offices, data centres, manufacturing centres and research and development hubs, in sectors as diverse as professional services, financial services, pharmaceuticals, media and technology.

Compass partners with social enterprise Giki to empower its 45k strong workforce to reduce their carbon footprint #

Compass Group UK & Ireland, the UK’s largest food and support services provider, has announced a new partnership to enable its colleagues to reduce their personal carbon footprints by an estimated 400kg CO2e each per year.
The decision to partner with the evidence-based UK social enterprise and B-corp, Giki, recognises the importance of helping colleagues, clients, and customers to understand the impact our everyday choices have on climate change and the role large organisations like Compass can play in accelerating societal decarbonisation at scale.
The urgency with which this transition must be achieved was reaffirmed last month, in the latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), where climate justice was underlined as a growing concern in need of increased awareness, as those that have contributed least to climate change are being disproportionately affected. The IPCC report* states that “10% of the highest-emitting households contribute 40-45% of global greenhouse gas emissions and 50% of the lowest-emitting households (including small islands communities) contribute less than 15% of overall greenhouse gases.”
As a diverse business that serves millions of people across every sector of society, every day, Compass recognises the impact its workforce can have as individuals and sees its partnership with Giki as an opportunity to democratise climate action, by providing all its colleagues with free access to Giki’s platform and challenge-based programme.
Its simplicity is a major benefit. Once people have answered some simple questions about their lifestyle, their carbon footprint is calculated and the platform then provides up to 150 practical “steps” that users can take to reduce their carbon footprint.
Steps are gamified either by theme or by recommendation and can be selected to suit individual and family lifestyles, increasing the chances of sustained adoption.
Mobilising action will be incentivised through challenges scheduled throughout the year, targeting steps specifically designed to drive awareness and empower behavioural change in the key areas of focus, such as dietary change, plastics and water usage; as shared in Compass’ first in depth climate impact report, released in February.
To mark Stop Food Waste Day a specific Waste Less Challenge has also been created providing steps to reduce food waste.
The platform has already been successfully trialled within two of Compass’ six sectors, which has seen a small group (under 50 people) already achieving savings of 5,500kg CO2e - equating to carbon emitted from 11 short haul return flights; 221,368 litres of water - equating to 3700 showers; and 4016m2 land (i.e. avoiding usage change) - the equivalent of 20 tennis courts**.
Platform access is now being rolled out across the business. Data will be collected and shared on dashboards built for each sector and specific business function, so that measurable progress can be celebrated on leaderboards - internally with colleagues and externally in partnership with clients who are also using Giki across the public and private sector.
Commenting on the new partnership Carolyn Ball, Director for Delivery of Net Zero, Compass Group UK & Ireland said:

Empowering people with knowledge so they know how to make a difference every day, has never been more important. Everyone’s choices matter, and it’s in this spirit that we want to come together as a community - not just as a corporate. Working with Giki gives us the opportunity to do this in an inclusive and measurable way, demystifying climate action so everyone feels empowered to act.”
Commenting on the new partnership Jo Hand, Giki co-founder, said:

Building sustainable behaviours at home and at work is key to people taking climate action and helping us all move towards net zero. As many people face a cost of living crisis, carbon cutting steps, including energy savings and waste reduction, frequently help with cost savings too. We are really looking forward to working with Compass and their employees, because while one step is progress a large community taking action drives real change.”
Chris Chidley, Chief Growth and Innovation Officer, Compass Group UK & Ireland, added:

The opportunity to strengthen our client partnerships through meaningful climate action, is a privilege. To have a simple, science-based tool capable of supporting our people in their practical understanding of this responsibility, at such a critical time, is something to celebrate. Thank you to the Giki team and all involved.”