Anjali Dattani

Anjali Dattani

A Cambridge College is celebrating receiving a Three Star Campus Rating for the fourth time, following an in-depth audit of the standard of en suite accommodation it provides for conference delegates and B&B guests in vacation periods.

The audit included assessment of a wide range of different aspects of the accommodation. In particular, this year’s Quality in Tourism report highlighted the College’s free on-site parking, the very high standard of cleanliness in all areas, good quality towels, College branded toiletries and beverage trays in the bedrooms and the architecturally-attractive Dome Dining Room.Murray Edwards College was awarded the accolade from VisitEngland, the country’s national tourist board, for the facilities and services on offer in its bedrooms and bathrooms, as well as public areas such as Reception and the Dining Room. 

The resident New Hall Art Collection – the second largest collection of works by female artists in the world – continues to be a unique and impressive feature which guests have also identified as adding ‘significant value’ to their stay.

Chris Pope, General Manager of Conferences, Catering and Residences said: “We were so pleased to receive our Three Star Campus Rating once again, as we celebrate 20 successful years of our conference and events business. This accolade is an important official endorsement of our accommodation and the team that works so hard to ensure we deliver a quality experience to our guests.

“One of the things the assessor highlighted was the high standard of cleanliness and our excellent housekeeping department was commended on the attention to detail in this important area.”

Quality in Tourism is the assessment service for VisitEngland. Its Campus Accreditation is specifically for university or college accommodation and ratings are awarded on a scale of One to Five Stars.

Coeliac UK, the UK charity for people who need to live gluten free, along with Innovate UK, the UK’s innovation agency, have £180k available for research and are inviting applications from UK businesses and researchers.  

Coeliac UK in collaboration with Innovate UK are launching a second research call to industry and researchers to make improvements for people living with the autoimmune condition, coeliac disease. Projects must underpin and support Coeliac UK's top ten research priorities, for example: 

  • improving diagnostics for coeliac disease, refractory coeliac disease and/or gluten related neurological conditions 
  • developing tools for the long term management of coeliac disease 
  • enhancing the quality of staple gluten free food 

Total project costs can range from £50k to £250k and researchers and businesses can jointly apply for a share of the funding up to the maximum £180K available. Applicants can find out more about this competition at: www.coeliac.org.uk/innovateuk and must apply by the closing date: 16 September 2019, 10:00 (GMT+1). 

Hilary Croft, CEO of Coeliac UK said: “We want to change the course of coeliac disease treatment through improved diagnostics, technology and food innovations that truly bridge the gap between people, health professionals and products. Research has the power to do this and by combining forces with Innovate UK and industry, our charity demonstrates its unwavering commitment to the UK’s growing gluten free community. 

Kathryn Miller, Innovation Lead for Food and Nutrition at Innovate UK, said: “It’s fantastic to be working with charities such as Coeliac UK to promote innovations that will have a real, positive impact on people’s lives. Innovate UK has long supported businesses innovating in the areas of healthcare diagnostics, digital support and enhancing nutritional quality of foods, themes already supported through joint Coeliac UK / Innovate UK funding awarded earlier this year.” 

Earlier this year, three projects based in Birmingham, Newcastle and Edinburgh, were awarded Coeliac UK / Innovate UK grants from the first joint research call. Including the contribution from industry, a total £750k was committed to research. 

  • A new test to provide a less invasive way of diagnosing coeliac disease that may not rely on someone having to eat ongoing amounts of gluten if they have already adopted a gluten free diet. 
  • Development of three new plant proteins derived from crops, which are underused in the UK: rapeseed cake, faba beans and naked oats, to help improve the ingredients used in gluten free bread. 
  • Software innovation to help in the ongoing management of coeliac disease, so that those who need additional care receive access to crucial support when they need it and those living well can receive the assurance of being clinically followed up without the inconvenience, time and cost of hospital appointments. 

 

We are sure our members are aware of the very distressing news of a listeria infection in six seriously ill hospital patients in England. Three of these patients have sadly died. Currently there are no cases in Scotland, Wales or Northern Ireland. TUCO is deeply upset to learn of the patient deaths and its thoughts are with the families affected.

Public Health England (PHE), The Food Standards Agency (FSA), Public Health Wales (PHW), Food Standards Scotland (FSS), Health Protection Scotland (HPS) and a number of local authorities are currently investigating the source of listeria infections linked to pre-packed sandwiches.

Sandwiches and salads linked to the cases have been withdrawn and the supplier, The Good Food Chain, has voluntarily ceased production while the investigation continues. This business had been supplied with meat produced by North Country Cooked Meats which subsequently produced a positive test result for the outbreak strain of listeria. This business and North Country Quality Foods who they distribute through, have also voluntarily ceased production.

TUCO takes its members’ safety extremely seriously and, as The Good Food Chain is also a supplier on the TUCO Framework Agreement for Sandwiches and Associated products, has therefore suspended The Good Food Chain and its products from our frameworks until further checks can be completed.  We are liaising with our Food Safety auditors STS throughout the process.

Very few of our members used this particular supplier and we are in touch personally with each of those affected to arrange a suitable alternative.

Since learning of the localised outbreak, the Procurement team have been in touch with suppliers across all relevant TUCO frameworks to ensure that any products linked to either supplier are removed from the supply chain immediately. We will update members if there are any further withdrawals or suspensions.

Please note advice from the FSA 'Listeria infection in healthy people is usually either unnoticed or may cause very mild illness. However, it can have more serious consequences for some people, particularly those with pre-existing health conditions and pregnant women. The health risk to the public remains low and individuals should only seek medical attention if they develop symptoms.'

If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to get in touch with our contracts team on 0161 713 3429.

UPDATE - Monday 17 June 

Since the time of publishing the above statement, we have been made aware that an additional two patients have sadly passed away. The above advice is still correct, please do contact TUCO if you have any concerns.

 

 

Friday, 07 June 2019 11:25

Food safety, everyone’s business

Today the Food Standards Agency (FSA) is celebrating the first ever World Food Safety Day by highlighting the UK’s internationally recognised food alerts system. 

While it is rare for food to be removed from the market because there is a problem, there are several reasons why food may need to be recalled. For example, if the allergen information on a label is inaccurate, or if there are concerns around food poisoning bacteria such as salmonella.

Dr Colin Sullivan, Chief Operating Officer at the Food Standards Agency, said: “We’re very pleased to be supporting World Food Safety Day. One of the key ways we help ensure food is safe is through publishing food alerts which tell you about products that have been removed from sale, so you can take action to keep safe.

“We issued 72 food recalls and 103 allergy alerts in 2018 and we make every effort to make sure we publish our alerts as soon as we can and with information that is both useful and clear. Our advice to people is always based on the best science and evidence available. I’d encourage everyone to sign up for our food alerts service, to get immediate updates when product recalls and allergy alerts are published.”

Steve Wearne, Director of Science at the Food Standards Agency and Vice Chair of the Codex Alimentarius Commission, said: “We are proud to be celebrating the first ever World Food Safety Day, it is great to have an international day to draw attention and inspire action to help prevent, detect and manage foodborne risks.

“Today is an opportunity to strengthen efforts to ensure the food we eat is safe. Food Safety is everyone’s business, whether you produce, process, sell or prepare food, then you have a role in keeping it safe. We are pleased to play our part in making sure people can trust their food, particularly through working with local authorities and food businesses when a recall is required.”

Sign up to the food alerts and allergy alerts, so you can be the first to hear if there is a recall. https://www.food.gov.uk/news-alerts/subscribe

FSA Explains

A recall is when unsafe food is removed from the supply chain and consumers are advised to take appropriate action, for example, to return or dispose of the unsafe food.

 

Twenty-nine hopeful chefs are looking forward to completing the next round of the Graduate Awards on Thursday 27th June 2019. The Graduate Awards are open to kitchen and pastry chefs, aged 23 and under. Taking part in these annual awards provides the opportunity for young chefs, who are now in the workplace, to develop their culinary skills. With the opportunity to go on and compete in Young National Chef of the Year, it also puts chefs who make the grade firmly into the industry spotlight. 

Since it launched in 2002, the Guild has seen 69 chefs pass the Graduate Awards, with former achievers going on to win The Young National Chef of the Year, The Roux Scholarship and The National Chef of the Year.

In the northern and southern heats, the chefs will complete a series of challenges with successful chefs going on to take part in the final exam on Thursday 29th August. During the kitchen test, the chefs will complete a butchery and fishmongery task, a paper exam and create a main course using a mystery basket of ingredients before making a classic dessert. In the pastry exam, the creative chefs will complete a variety of pastry challenges briefed by chair of judges, Will Torrent.

The chefs named in the upcoming heats are: -

Northern Heat

  • Michael Jones, Rudding Park Hotel
  • George Birtwell, TRUEfoods
  • Theo Hadjitofi, de Banke Group
  • Rhys Inman, Shears Yard
  • Ieuan Davies, The Manor House Hotel
  • Anthony Brooks, The Elm Tree
  • Keegan Loveday, The Crown Hotel Bawtry
  • Justin Skinner, Tuddenham Mill
  • Megan Beale, Dumbleton Hall Hotel

Southern Heat

  • Jack Clarke, East India Club
  • Opeoluwa Odutayo, Launceston Place Restaurant
  • Joshua Rooney, Petrus
  • Daniel Ridley, Gilpin Hotel & Lake House
  • Ashleigh Hellowell, The Royal Garden Hotel
  • Reece Kallah, 45 Jermyn Street
  • Marv Daniel Unalit, Cliveden House
  • Daniel Buckle, Deakins
  • Thomas Pymer, The Magdalen Arms
  • Nathaniel Berney, Belmond Le Manoir aux Quat'Saisons
  • Arron Varley, The Vineyard, Stockcross
  • Angelica Kainth, Fenchurch Restaurant

Pastry Exam

  • Connor Liam James Stow, Just Desserts and Hull College
  • Thomas Bayliss, Le Gavroche
  • Nathan Alexander Dors, Alveston House Hotel
  • Laura Aylott, The Thatchers Arms
  • Amy Jones, Cheshire College South and West
  • Kit De’Ath, Compass Group, Chartwells, De Montfort University
  • Charlotte Bonham, The Pig
  • Kate Mudge, Pennyhill Park Hotel and Spa

Steve Munkley, founder of the Graduate Awards and Vice-President of the Craft Guild of Chefs said: “It’s set to be an incredible experience for all of the finalists with the return of the two-day mentor event. To be part of that opportunity, the chefs will first need to stand out in the heats and impress our examiners, including chairs Russell Bateman and Will Torrent. My best piece of advice to all of those hoping for a final spot is to work closely with your mentors, making time to practise the different elements outside of your day job. All those who have succeeded in the past have shown true dedication and a passion to work hard and make sure they achieve the pass mark of 85%. It’s then led them to career-changing opportunities, and we look forward to discovering which chefs will be joining our Graduate list this year.”

The chefs who make the final will go on a memorable two-day mentor experience in July including a full day at Daylesford Organics where they will begin the experience with a tour of the farm and all its surroundings, followed by a cheese demo from the award-winning cheesemakers. A BBQ lunch will be served before finalists watch inspiring demos from the London Meat Company, James Knight of Mayfair and talented pastry chef Andrew Ditchfield from the House of Commons.

Chefs will enjoy an evening dinner at the Rabbit Pub in Kingham and an overnight stay at the Crown and Cushion Hotel, giving each chef the opportunity to socialise with their peers. Day two of the trip will include a visit to Shipton Mill for an engaging tour of the mill and surroundings before heading to Upton Smokery to explore and relish a BBQ Lunch. An afternoon of gin tasting will follow at Cotswolds Distillery.

You can follow all the Graduate Awards action on social media using the hashtag #CGCGradAwards. The Graduate Awards are sponsored by The London Meat Co, Oranka, Savoy Education Trust, Reynolds, Quorn, Meiko UK, Essential Cuisine, City and Guilds, Robert Welch, Villeroy and Boch, CCS, Mars Foods, James Knight of Mayfair, Cobra Beer and Pan Artisan.

 

Friday, 31 May 2019 07:52

Reducing your food waste with CESA

CESA has released a guide about how to reduce food waste. Aimed at foodservice operators, distributors and consultants, it contains a comprehensive summary of the legislation surrounding this vital area. It also details the best ways for operators in all sectors to comply with requirements, and shows steps they can take to improve overall efficiency. 

Sustainability and climate change are becoming increasingly important issues to confront. They require action at every level. Reducing food waste is one of the most pressing issues, and the guide explains the current landscape with regards to how policies and initiatives, like the Courtauld Commitment, are affecting the drive towards a zero waste economy.

Many businesses are not aware of the true costs of food waste, from the cost of uneaten food to those incurred by its collection and disposal. The guide covers every step of the food’s life cycle within a modern catering environment and offers advice on how to optimise your process in order to reduce waste as much as possible, from menu design, storage and preparation to portioning, and how to handle unpreventable waste.

It includes information about best practice for site evaluations, as well as guides to the available equipment solutions. Also covered is information about the importance of correct installation and maintenance of new equipment, and also how to ensure your staff are fully trained in any new procedures these initiatives require.

These changes can seem overwhelming, which is why the guide also includes case studies, setting out what needs to be done for a diverse range of businesses, from small cafes to large industrial caterers. The case studies also demonstrate the real reduction in costs these businesses have seen since implementing new waste disposal protocols, showing the concrete benefits they have gained.

The guide is available to download now from the Info Hub on CESA’s website, which can be accessed via the information tab on the home page.

The Catering Equipment Suppliers Association (CESA) is the authoritative voice of the catering equipment industry, representing over 190 companies who supply, service and maintain all types of commercial catering equipment - from utensils to full kitchen schemes. For more information on CESA visit www.cesa.org.uk

TUCO recently commissioned EFECA, who work with the RSPO, to look at the credentials of our suppliers with regard to palm oil, this report confirms their findings.

The report will assist TUCO in developing a group accreditation with the RSPO. 

The research covered 20 TUCO suppliers and found a number of responses highlighted a lack of understanding surrounding CSPO and RSPO certification. The report also includes details of next steps.

Why should suppliers become RSPO supply chain certified?
There are many benefits and reasons to become a member of RSPO, such as contributing constructively towards promoting the growth and use of sustainable palm oil to protect people, planet and prosperity. The RSPO is an internationally recognised certification standard and recognised within the UK government buying standards. It is the leading global standard within palm oil and the most widely used in the UK market. Membership demonstrates a first step towards commitment to sustainable palm oil. RSPO certification gives the assurance that the claims which are being made by a company can be verified. Each member of the supply chain needs to take part in order to make public claims.

Read the findings here.

WRAP is delighted to launch £18 million of funding to support new projects aimed at resource efficiency. The grants, funded by Defra, will support key policy outcomes in the areas of food, plastics, textiles, recycling infrastructure and litter.  To launch the fund WRAP has today announced the first wave of grants, which starts with Food Waste Prevention – focusing on surplus food redistribution.  

Large Scale Grant - Food Waste Prevention – awarding grants between £200,000 to £1 million for capital infrastructure 

This scheme is to provide capital infrastructure that will help address a current capacity gap in the sector for redistributing food that is currently being wasted, diverting this to people in need. The grants will support redistributing a significant volume of food to end beneficiaries through not-for-profit organisations.

Small Scale Grant Food Waste Prevention – awarding both capital and revenue grants between £20,000 to £170,000.

Programme of grants to provide new small-scale capital infrastructure and revenue support to organisations redistributing surplus food from the likes of retailers and food manufacturers.  This programme will continue the success of the previous small-scale redistribution programme delivered by WRAP in addressing barriers to food redistribution.

 

For further information please visit the funding page http://www.wrap.org.uk/content/resource-action-fund

 

University of Manchester

13 June 2019, 10am - 1:30pm

We are delighted to have collaborated with University of Manchester to raise awareness and work to eradicate Modern Slavery. We'd like to invite you to this free session to explore issues, experiences and share ideas around the Modern Slavery agenda. 

We will be sharing issues, experience, good practices and problems with a view to increasing transparency across supply chains, and by working jointly to stamp out an unacceptable practice. This is also a key opportunity to network and ensure you're clued up on the latest developments in working to remove modern slavery from our supply chains. 

Date: Thursday 13th June 2019
 
Time: Arrival from 9:00am, event to start 10:00am.  Lunch and networking from 12:30pm – 13:30pm
 
Location: Manchester Meeting Place, Barnes Wallis Building - Harwood Room

Confirmed speakers include:

  • Mike Haslin, Chief Executive Officer, TUCO
  • Sheri-Leigh Miles, Director, NETpositive Futures
  • Ian Jarvey, Deputy Head of Procurement, University of Manchester
  • David Hansom, Partner, Clyde & Co LLP
  • Damian Dallimore, Partnership Lead for GMCA Programme Challenger

Modern Slavery: The Facts

There are estimated 40.3 million people in modern slavery around the world, including 10 million children. Modern slavery can affect people of any age, gender or race. Many people think that slavery happens only overseas, in developing countries. In fact, no country is free from modern slavery, even Britain. The Government estimates that there are tens of thousands people in modern slavery in the UK.

Sign up here.

British Food Fortnight (21st September – 6th October 2019), now in its 18th year and organised by Love British Food, is the national food promotion which every Autumn invites communities and organisations across the country to celebrate the diverse and delicious, high quality food produced in this country. The food service sector has been at the heart of the promotion since its early years with many of the leading food service organisations taking part resulting in hundreds of chefs in the public sectors running special Love British Food menus every year. It is now a proven commercial promotion delivering affordable quality menus that are a hit with the customer.

 Public Sector (PSMI) Top 20

Alexia Robinson, Founder of Love British Food, was named in the 2018 listing of Cost Sector Catering’s Top 20 ‘most influential’ people in Public Sector catering. This is a tremendous accolade and platform for further work in the sector at a time when food supply chains and prices are at their most uncertain. With this in mind Love British Food is focusing its 2019 campaign on catering in the public sector with the aim of encouraging more school caterers to make British the first supplier of choice.

 Leading chefs are Ambassadors for Love British Food

The campaign is led by some of the most renowned and passionate chefs and leaders in the food world: Michelin-starred Chef Raymond Blanc, OBE, TV Presenter, Entrepreneur and Farmer Liz Earle, Michelin-starred Chef Phil Howard, GBBO 2016 winner Candice Brown, NFU President Minette Batters, Nutritionist Lucy Williamson and Children’s app developer Oli Blanc. New ambassadors for 2019 include home cook and family food writer Alex Hollywood, Presenter and expert on English Cookery, Lotte Duncan, TV Presenter, Chris Bavin, Founder of The Clink, Chef Alberto Crisci and TV Presenter and Chef Cyrus Todiwala, MBE.

 Who is taking part?

LACA: increasing the number of schools that serve British Food Fortnight menus. 1.5+ million British meals were served to schools during British Food Fortnight 2018. Welsh schools have been invited to take part this year too with bilingual support materials to assist caterers to run Welsh menu promotions during the national food celebrations.

TUCO: British Food Fortnight fits well with Freshers Week and is a key time for educating young people about healthy, quality food in the university environment. Love British Food is partnering with TUCO to invite university chefs to run British Food Fortnight menus. British food recipes and How-to Student Guides will be shared with universities.

Sodexo: working with nearly 200 schools in the UK, Sodexo will be ramping up activity to include British Food Fortnight branding across all sites and introducing specific British menus.

Cucina: In 2018 supplied 60,000 students across 50 schools with a British Food Fortnight menu each day.   Activity included ‘Cooking through the Ages’ with recipes dating from each decade starting with 1920s and up to 2010. This year Cucina is looking to make activity bigger and better.

Hampshire Fare & HC3S: 70% of schools in Hampshire participated with a pick and mix British/harvest men as well as additional classroom activities to fit with the curriculum.

Leading food service organisations: Brakes and Harrison Catering are all taking part this year building on their successful involvement in previous years.

 Love British Food Founder, Alexia Robinson, says: “We are facing uncertain times with Brexit and there is a real need for a robust supply of quality food at stable, affordable prices. We want to encourage the food service sector to make British food the first supplier of choice throughout the year. British Food Fortnight is a proven promotion in food service and we are encouraging school caterers to take part.”

 Why Should Caterers Take Part?

During the 18 years that British Food Fortnight has been running, caterers have continually been able to prove that buying British is affordable, adds value but also ensures they have a unique selling point by being able to list exactly what region or even farm the meat has come from.

 Michael Hales, LACA said: “Last year we were involved with British Food Fortnight for the first time and it really opened a number of doors for us. We are looking forward to working with our members to encourage them that British food sourcing is the way forward.”

 Love British Food Partner, David Mulcahy of Sodexo said: “We have partnered with Love British Food for a number of years and each year the food service activity gets bigger and better. As a company we reach a number of education establishments including schools and universities. Being able to run British promotions and showcase key British ingredients and dishes gives us a unique selling point. Our customers are keen to buy British but at the right price."

Top Tips British Food Fortnight 2019

Whether a contract caterer or meal provider to schools everyone can get involved in British Food Fortnight – the biggest national promotion of British Food. New customers can be attracted and existing customers can spend more, promotions during British Food Fortnight have had a serious impact on sales with one restaurant increasing sales by 300%.

Many will be sourcing British food already so can use British Food Fortnight to promote menus, ingredients and promotions. For those that don’t usually buy British, the fortnight is a good opportunity to source new suppliers, experiment with menus and add a number of British dishes.

  • Send your suppliers a copy of the menu and ask them to if they can supply British ingredients.
  • If you are catering in the public sector, consider forming a partnership with other public organisations to aggregate demand and make savings through bulk purchase.
  • Don’t be put off by prices that initially may seem higher. Buying large volumes can make the whole process affordable.
  • Promote your involvement in the fortnight by displaying POS material showcasing the British Food Fortnight logo on menus and around the restaurant.
  • Make sure you share the menus with customers well in advance. As well as British dishes you could also include local dishes from your region.
  • Run a competition to showcase the new menu. Some promotions that work include giving all diners entry to a prize draw to win a foodie treat.
  • Offer tastings of specific British dishes.
  • Use British Food Fortnight to see how popular dishes are or produce a special dish going forward that uses locally sourced ingredients.
  • Use Love British Food website for resources on how to make the most of British Food Fortnight, including the basic details, template menus and case studies.
  • British Food Fortnight national competition will continue to run. Ensure your establishment is taking part. With judges including Raymond Blanc, Phil Howard and Alberto Crisci, this is a guaranteed route to publicity and it will engage customers.

 Resources for caterers are available for download from www.lovebritishfood.co.uk. There is advice not just for the Fortnight but on everything caterers need to make British food a commercial success in their establishments: advice on sourcing, supplier contacts, case studies, tips for promoting your business in the media and sample regionalised menus and ideas for working with schools. Promotional materials including bunting, posters and shelf barkers can also be downloaded on the website.

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