Jacobs Media Group is honoured to be the recipient of the 2020 Queen's Award for Enterprise.

Public sector viewpoint: Sharing knowledge is the key to success

08 March 2016
Public sector viewpoint: Sharing knowledge is the key to success

Partnerships are central to driving innovation in university catering, says David Nuttall, board member of the University Caterers Organisation

Global food trends, along with an increasing number of international students and EU legislation on allergens, have all added to the long list of challenges faced by university caterers.

Against a backdrop of rising food prices, awareness of sustainability issues and a dip in the number of chefs moving into the higher education sector, university caterers appear to have a ‘mission impossible' situation on their hands.

The challenges can seem endless. With the rise of ‘foodie' trends, on-campus outlets have to compete harder with the high street. It was reported that an estimated £425 a year is spent on ethnic food per person in the UK, with the biggest market share being 16- to 34-year-olds and those in full-time education. With limited budgets and overheads to think about, university caterers simply don't have the same resources as restaurant chains.

Demanding sustainability

Finding an approach that meets all these needs is a task the very best in the business would find daunting, but universities up and down the country are finding a way. As with so many things in life, keeping it simple and being collaborative are key to making this balancing act work.

Take the University Caterers Organisation and its partnership with the Sustainable Restaurant Association as an example. By bringing together resources, knowledge and expertise, the two organisations have helped drive sustainability in university restaurants to a whole new level. This has been achieved by demonstrating how little changes can make a difference and how a concerted effort - no matter how small - can have an impact.

Tapping into greater knowledge

In the end, it comes down to support. With the help of industry organisations, the knowledge is there for caterers' to tap into. As a result, caterers are continually stepping up to the mark and delivering diverse menus and sustainability plans that any establishment would be proud of.

That is not to say that more can't be done. New challenges will always appear as the foodservice sector continues to grow in size and stature. But with the right information, caterers can continue to tackle them head on and with confidence.

For more information, visitwww.tuco.org

Continue reading

You need to be a premium member to view this. Subscribe from just 99p per week.

Already subscribed?

The Caterer Breakfast Briefing Email

Start the working day with The Caterer’s free breakfast briefing email

Sign Up and manage your preferences below

Check mark icon
Thank you

You have successfully signed up for the Caterer Breakfast Briefing Email and will hear from us soon!

Jacobs Media Group is honoured to be the recipient of the 2020 Queen's Award for Enterprise.

The highest official awards for UK businesses since being established by royal warrant in 1965. Read more.

close

Ad Blocker detected

We have noticed you are using an adblocker and – although we support freedom of choice – we would like to ask you to enable ads on our site. They are an important revenue source which supports free access of our website's content, especially during the COVID-19 crisis.

trade tracker pixel tracking