September 11, 2018

Plans by the Department of Health to make calorie labelling mandatory on out-of-home menus have ignited a row with the Treasury over the cost to business.


The Telegraph reported ( this week that the Department of Health will soon publish a consultation to ensure there is consistent calorie labelling for restaurants, cafes, takeaways and online delivery services. 


Concern these proposals could result in job losses and higher food prices being passed on to consumers, costs may be particularly burdensome to micro and small businesses which frequently change their menus to offer seasonal local foods. The Treasury could ultimately block the policy. 


Although a number of foodservice operators, such as Wetherspoons and Pizza Express, already display calorie counts voluntarily, the majority of out-of-home businesses do not. 


August 31, 2018

The Caterer is inviting members of the hospitality industry to take part in a survey investigating the state of mental health in the sector. 

The results of the survey will be published in a special report in the 12 October issue. The issue will be dedicated to mental health in hospitality and explore what has changed since The Caterer’s award-winning Open Minds mental health survey and campaign in 2012.

To take the survey, please click here.

The issue, in partnership with Hospitality Action, will also feature advice for coping with mental health issues and for businesses looking to better support their staff.

Irrespective of your sector or role, we want to hear from you. The survey is completely anonymous and should only take about two minutes to complete. The survey closes on 19 September.

FOOD PRICE INFLATION a ‘record breaking’ six times higher after extreme weather

August 27, 2018

Foodservice price inflation reached 3.2% in July 2018 – six times higher than earlier in the year – following harsh weather across Europe continues.

Extreme frost and snow at the start of 2018, combined with the drought of the summer, a shortage of labour and volatile exchange rates are all believed to have contributed to shortages that are boosting prices.

Alongside vegetables grains have also suffered in the heat. Former strongholds of grain production including Russia, Australia, Argentina and several EU countries were all hit by heatwave conditions, leading the International Grains Council to cut the global production forecast to a five year low.

However according to CGA Prestige Food Service Price Index sugar prices have continued to plummet in the UK due to healthy eating campaigns, the Government’s sugar tax and continued strength in global production.

Shaun Allen, Prestige Purchasing chief executive, said: “The extreme summer weather has had a negative impact on prices in many areas. We expect this to ease as we progress through the autumn, but markets remain much more volatile in 2018 than they have been in recent years, so we are not out of choppy waters yet.”

Fiona Speakman, CGA’s client director for food, added: “The record highs and lows revealed in this month’s edition of the Index indicate the volatility of foodservice prices at the moment.

“Businesses in the supply chain are facing a multitude of issues that are out of their hands, like extreme weather and fluctuations in exchange rates, and their purchasing strategies need to be sharper than ever if they are to soften the inflationary pressures.”

Earlier this month The Caterer reported that a perfect storm of a long cold winter and drought triggered by a hot summer would likely reduce yields and see an increase in prices.

At the time James Wellock, managing director of supplier Wellocks, warned that prices could soon skyrocket as farmers struggle to maintain their crops.

He said: “At the moment, people are ordering summer crops, so salads and berries, etc, and it’s not really an issue for us right now. However, there will be significant issues with supplies of crops like carrots, parsnips, potatoes and cabbages as we move towards the autumn and over winter, and they will all be a lot more expensive.”

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