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On arrival, delegates will be taken on a Foodie Walking Tour around St Pancras Station, King’s Cross and Pancras Square where they will learn about the new trending food currently thriving and making great profits in the capital. The tour will be led by Academy Manager, Elizabeth Crawford.

Next on the agenda is a visit to Grain Store Restaurant. Here you will be introduced to the new idea of the ‘exploded kitchen’; a flexible cooking/dining space that engages customers with elements of the cooking process spilling over to the table. Delegates will also learn about the sustainability policies flourishing here including Energy Management, Waste Management, Supplier Management, Staff Training and Generating Customer Awareness.
Do you ever ‘eat with your eyes?’ Judging what is on your plate before even tasting it? This evening, delegates will be taken to an extraordinary restaurant for a superb 5-course tasting menu with wine pairing at Dans Le Noir. Here, guests will be invited to put their senses to the test as dinner is served in total darkness. Visually impaired staff will teach you how to rediscover your other senses as you quickly learn that without sight, your taste is heightened… But are you able to guess what is on your plate?... Kangaroo… Ostrich… Crocodile… This exotic menu will really put you to the test.

Day 2 of this study tour will take you on an insightful and inspiring tour to London School of Economics, where you will be invited to go behind the scenes of the catering that this institution provides to thousands of people every day. Jacqui Beazley, head of catering, will be in charge of this visit and will be able to explain and answer any questions you have about their exciting and successful concepts.
During the afternoon and into the evening, delegates will have VIP access to the Taste of London Festival. World famous chefs will be present here, giving live demonstrations on cooking. Interactive, hands-on master classes are also available for all delegates plus the chance to network with artisan producers, suppliers and more. Free food samples and products will be available for all visitors and your VIP tickets will ensure you have access to all areas, with free Champagne and a £20 voucher to spend inside the festival as just a couple of the advantages! 

 On the final day of the study tour delegates will experience another, yet totally different, foodie walking tour. This time in Soho, Elizabeth Crawford will lead the group around some innovative producers bringing new concepts and opportunities to delegates. This tour will finish at approximately 12:30, giving delegates time to make their way home in good time.

This study tour has been designed by the TUCO academy team with the main focuses to experience new food and come up with new eating experiences and concepts that institutions can adapt and use themselves. This Study Tour will not disappoint, convincing so many topics for a full intensive experience bursting with new ideas and huge invaluable learning experiences for delegates coming from all areas of the catering sector.

This Study Tour will be taking place 14th – 16th June and costs £385.00 per delegate. To make a booking, or for more information, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Monday, 08 May 2017 09:01

Keynote speaker announced for Conference

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The TUCO Conference will open with keynote speaker, Ella Mills, whose session relates strongly to the Conference theme, Health, Wealth & Wellbeing.

Ella is an award-winning cookery author and entrepreneur. After being diagnosed with a rare illness that affected her nervous system, she found that her symptoms were helped by going vegan and cutting out gluten, dairy and refined sugar from her diet.

In 2012, she started a blog to track her recipe experiments. Since then, she has released a further two best-selling books, created a #1 app, and with her husband, opened two deli’s in London, as well as launching a product line across the UK under the sister company, The Mae Deli by Deliciously Ella.

Ella will be talking about her journey from low mental and physical wellbeing in her early 20's to becoming a hugely successful business woman. She will also show that recipes containing only natural foods can be just as delicious!


Click here to visit the Deliciously Ella blog.

Thursday, 27 April 2017 09:04

Get your entries in for the TUCO Awards!

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Is there someone in your team who deserves national recognition for their commitment to their job? Then enter them for the TUCO Awards!

We will be launching the very first TUCO Awards at the TUCO Conference in July, where winners will be announced during the gala dinner on the final night. But we need your nominations!

There are five categories where individuals and teams can be up for a ‘TUCO’. They are: Rising Star Award, Innovation Award, Sustainability Award, TUCO Team of the Year, and TUCO Member of the Year.

They recognise the hard work of all individuals, no matter if they’re in their first role or in a management position. The awards celebrate the initiatives and bright ideas of our members, including new openings, innovative campaigns, and sustainability. There is also the TUCO Member of the Year, which shines a light on one university or college.

Matt White, TUCO chair, said: "I’m delighted to launch the very first TUCO Awards. We feel that it’s about time that we shout out about some of the individuals working hard each and every day in our member institutions. The TUCO Awards recognise and celebrate the effort, improvement and achievement from all levels of staff and we want these awards to be the round of applause our winners can look at every day on their mantelpiece. I can’t wait to present our first awards at the TUCO Conference on 26th July."

For more information and to enter your nomination (you can nominate yourself) electronically, visit www.tuco.ac.uk/awards by 5pm on 16th June.

Tuesday, 25 April 2017 09:20

Head of TUCO Academy vacancy!

Written by
Head of TUCO Academy
Do you excel in empowering individuals and groups to grow and learn new skills?  Are you passionate about learning and development and have experience within the hospitality sector?
If so, we have a unique opportunity for a motivated, dynamic, experienced learning and development professional to manage the recently created TUCO Academy.  This exciting project was launched in July 2015 with a vision to create a bespoke suite of accredited training and professional development courses for staff working in the higher and further education institutions.
The successful person will have the responsibility to shape and inform the emerging strategy of The Academy and will work alongside the steering group to deliver this ambitious project.
The University Caterers Organisation (TUCO) Ltd is an independent not for profit company owned by Higher & Further Education institutions that are its members.  We seek to advance education and training in relation to catering and hospitality activities.  The Academy currently offers members:
UK and International Study Tours
Training courses
Additionally, we are developing a masters degree in hospitality management in higher education and have recently registered as an Approved Apprenticeship Provider.
TUCO also seeks opportunities to exploit economies of scale available by co-ordinating demand of individual universities, colleges and other public sector bodies in areas of catering procurement.  
You will need to have experience of working in a similar role and will have excellent English language skills and the ability to communicate to various audiences.  All applicants must be eligible to work in the UK.
If you think you have the skills, energy, creativity and dedication to make an important contribution to the continuing growth and success of TUCO, we encourage you to apply for this post. In return, we offer a pleasant working environment, opportunities for professional development and flexible working conditions.  
For further information please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or apply by email with an up to date CV by 19th May 2017; interviews will be held on 1st June 2017.
Yours Sincerely
Michael Haslin MBA FCIPS
Chief Executive Officer
JOB DESCRIPTION for Head of TUCO Academy
£38,636.60 to £47,481.05  

(Flexible working policy in place)

BASE: Central Manchester

CONTRACT: Permanent with 12 months’ probationary period.

RESPONSIBLE TO: Chief Executive Officer



To pro-actively manage the development of the TUCO Academy (which offers online training, apprenticeship training, study tours, day courses and professional development content for conferences) by building a blended training programme in line with the overall strategic direction set out by the Steering Group. To promote the success of the TUCO Academy and to ensure that all courses meet the required standards.

1. Prepare and monitor budgets for all TUCO Academy activities, forecast costs and delegate numbers as required by organisational planning and budgeting systems.
2. Remain fully briefed on relevant skills, training and qualifications levels required by members for effective performance and development and ensure that the TUCO career map is updated regularly
3. Manage the delivery of the TUCO Apprenticeship scheme, including maintaining and updating all necessary information on learner progress and all statutory compliance arrangements for the Register of Approved Apprenticeship Providers
4. Formulate organisational strategy and plans to meet training and development needs of members.
5. Manage delivery and evaluation of training, following up as necessary.
6. Design training courses and programmes necessary to meet identified training needs and manage course delivery via external training providers.
7. Identify, select and manage the contractual relationship with external training and accreditation bodies, agencies and providers necessary to deliver required training to appropriate standards of excellence.
8. Ensure the organisation of training venues, including maximising use of onsite training space, logistics, transport, accommodation as required, to achieve efficient training attendance and delivery.
9. Plan and deliver training courses personally, where necessary, to compliment



Job Description


Green Gown Awards 2017 - Awarding sustainability excellence
Since 2004, the Green Gown Awards UK and Ireland have been recognising the exceptional sustainability initiatives being undertaken by universities and colleges across the UK.

All categories are open to any tertiary education establishment – including all post-16 educational institutions such as colleges, universities and learning and skills institutions. Specific categories are also aimed at student applications and 3rd party applications (companies working with institutions).

With 15 categories, including two new categories; Enterprise and Employability, make this year the year that you apply. If you have previously entered but never been selected as a Finalist, then you are eligible for the Best Newcomer category.

Stage 1 closes at noon on 7 June 2017

VisitThis email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Bidfood, one of the UK’s leading foodservice providers, has raised over £9,423 for The One Foundation, to fund clean water projects in Africa. With every £4 donated changing the life of someone living in a water-starved community, this amount will directly impact 2,356 people.

The ‘Give Water Give Life’ campaign, which launched on 13 March, ran for two weeks across 24 Bidfood sites nationwide and challenged employees to get involved in a host of fundraising and promotional activities.Celebrating ten years of working with One Drinks, the UK’s leading ethical drinks brand, Bidfood’s campaign aimed to raise awareness of the global water crisis and fundraise to help towards the 663 million people around the world who still don’t have access to clean water.

As part of the events, over 150 Bidfood employees took part in a 5L Challenge, where participants including CEO Andrew Selley and other members of the leadership team were tasked with living off just five litres of water during World Water Day (22 March). This included for all their washing, cooking and drinking needs – an everyday task for millions of people around the world without access to clean water and a stark difference from the 150 litres of water an average person in the UK uses per day.

Talking about his experience of the 5L Challenge, Andrew Selley, Bidfood CEO said: “Albeit a difficult challenge, what resonated with me was carrying my five-litre jerry can around with me all day, knowing that the contents of it was all I could have for 24 hours.
“It was a very thought-provoking exercise and a real eye opener. I would definitely encourage others to take on the challenge.”

Many of the 24 sites are continuing to run fundraising activities over the coming months including sponsored walks, African-themed lunches, bake sales and quizzes. Other participants in the 5L Challenge on World Water Day (22 March) included representatives from the industry, media and one of Bidfood’s key customers, ISS.

To help change more lives by fundraising, donating or supporting One Drinks, visit onedifference.org/givewater or visit www.justgiving.com/campaigns/charity/onefoundation/bidvestgivewatergivelife

Friday, 21 April 2017 11:32

Pricing Bulletin from 27-Mar-17 To 24-April-17

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New and improved!
We have a simplified survey designed to capture your experiences of the TUCO suppliers on the Catering Light & Heavy Equipment framework. The contract review meetings will be held on 23/05/17 and it would be great if you could spare some time to provide us with your feedback

Please click the below link below for the survey:


**Survey closes Friday 12th May 2017**

 Please note there is revised pricing on the following agreements:





Fruit & Veg

Accent Fresh

Meat & Poultry

John Sheppard Butchers


Soft Drinks

Coca Cola

New promotions


New documents

Alcohol - AWRS details

Oliver Kay - Crop Report & Weekly Produce Report

Birtwistles - Market Report

Coca Cola - Coke Life Delist & Appletiser document



London Universities Purchasing Consortium (LUPC) are pleased to announce an exciting, new opportunity for catering consultants within the Higher Education (HE) and wider not-for-profit sectors.

In collaboration with the other regional HE purchasing consortia, LUPC will shortly be tendering for the first national Catering Consultancy Services framework for the sector.

This broad framework will assist consortia members from across higher education, and LUPC members from wider not-for-profit membership organisations, museums, and galleries, with their in-house or outsourced catering requirements.

LUPC’s aim is to create a framework of high calibre consultants that can be appointed by HE purchasing consortia Members in a quick and easy manner, using best-in-practice tender documentation.

The framework will cover the following catering consultancy services: Catering reviews; Facilities strategy, Tender management; Capital projects (Design & Planning/ investment); Projects (project management, design and equipment); Menu design; Outlet branding; Recruitment; Compliance; and Mystery shopper programmes.
The tender opportunity will be published in the Official Journal of the European Union (OJEU) at the end of April, with the aim of going live in September.
Food Service Consultants, GY5 Limited, are providing advice to LUPC on this tender, to ensure that the sector’s requirements are fully met and LUPC can deliver a relevant, high quality framework for both members and consultants alike. This precludes GY5 from bidding for a place on the framework.
Member organisations are also at the heart of the tender, providing input and guidance on the tender documentation and carrying out evaluation of the bids to ensure this new agreement fully meets the needs of the sector.
The tender will involve a two stage process: Consultants will be required to demonstrate their experience and technical ability at the PQQ stage. Bidders will then be shortlisted to the ITT stage, which will include responding to questions on, and pricing a ‘live site’ which is one of LUPC’s current member institutions’ actual requirements, as well as outlining how bidders will meet elements of the Consultancy Services detailed in the framework specification. The live site intends to appoint the successful bidder as part of this process.
During the ITT stage, bidders will have the opportunity to attend a Bidders’ Conference in London where they will be able to find out more about the university purchasing consortia, and to visit the live site to enable them to bid accurately on this contract.
In total, it is intended that 8-10 consultants will be awarded a place on the framework. In addition to LUPC, participating consortia include Advanced Procurement for Universities and Colleges (APUC); Higher Education Purchasing Consortium, Wales (HEPCW); North Eastern Universities Purchasing Consortium (NEUPC); North Western Universities Purchasing Consortium (NWUPC); Southern Universities Purchasing Consortium (SUPC); and The University Caterers Organisation (TUCO).

Julian Edwards from GY5 commented “There is a huge disparity in consulting methods in the UK and Ireland. This project provides an excellent opportunity to set new standards, invite innovation and recognise those professional consultants, who operate with integrity and true independence for this and other sectors.”

Tuesday, 18 April 2017 09:46

Introducing Bidfood

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From 3rd April 2017 Bidvest Food Services changed their name to Bidfood. The change follows the separation of the global Bidvest Foodservice businesses from the Bidvest Group, when it listed independently on the Johannesburg Stock Exchange in May last year, and the UK’s name change follows on from other name changes around the world.


More information can be found here on the Bidfood Website.

Friday, 07 April 2017 15:35

Pricing Bulletin from 27-Mar-17 To 10 -Aprilr-17

Written by

Meat and Poultry – Research and Supplier Review

On 20th April we have the supplier reviews and the tender working party meeting at TUCO HQ. We would be grateful if you could spare some time to help shape the new framework

Pre-tender survey

Supplier Assessment


Catering Light & Heavy Equipment – Supplier Review

We have a survey available ahead of the contract reviews to be held in the next couple of months, it would be great if you could spare some time to provide us with your feedback:



Palmer & Harvey


Fish & Seafood

M & J Seafood


Fruit & Veg 

Ferryfast Produce Ltd T/A Worcester Produce 


Innovative Food Concepts
Dr Oetker


Milk & Bread

Coultons Bread



Angel Human Resources
New promotions
New documents
Brakes - Q2 Market Report
Oliver Kay - Buyers Guide, Easter Opening Times 
Birtwistles - Specials
Arthur David - Produce Update
Direct Seafood - April Catch up
West Horsley - Red Tractor Certificate
Heineken - Brands & CRM presentation



Advertising Opportunities: Dan Hillman

t: 0345 500 6008 e: dan@h2opublishing.co.uk

TUCO Magazine Editor: Morag Wilson

t: 01474 520 267 e: morag@h2opublishing.co.uk

Contact Us

The University Caterers Organisation Ltd

3rd Floor, National House

St Ann Street, Manchester

M2 7LE

t: 0161 713 3420 e: info@tuco.ac.uk