Chef John Benson-Smith has teamed up with pie, pasty and sausage roll manufacturer Peter's Food Service in a bid to transform the culinary experience for sports fans on match days.
Benson-Smith, consultant executive chef to Manchester City Football Club, will work with the company to examine its suppliers and improve them where necessary, as well as helping to develop new service menus.
The former Northern Chef of the Year and BBC Masterchefjudge, who led the Labour Government's Better Hospital Food Initiative, has previously signalled that he wanted to improve food choice for football fans.
He said: "This is such an exciting proposition. Originally, Neil Court-Johnston, managing director of Peter's Food Service Division, and I discussed ways in which we could pioneer a new stadia food experience, but the remit has become greater still. We now have an opportunity to critique Peter's entire food service provision, which comprises over 900 products, with a view to improving quality, increasing innovation and developing new service menus.
"That doesn't necessarily mean Champagne and caviar. It's simply about doing things right with real, well-sourced quality ingredients that taste great."
Court-Johnston (pictured, right, with Benson-Smith) added: "Peter's are hugely passionate about the food they serve, be it at football grounds, forecourts, leisure or retail and we want to develop the very best products that will appeal to all age groups and tastes. That's why, over the next few months, John and I will be visiting our key suppliers and carrying out rigorous product checks, before embarking on a programme of transformational recipe development and improvement.
"An obvious priority is football. We have rapidly developed as a market leader in sports stadia with some 40 professional clubs and we're absolutely determined to revolutionise the match day food experience wherever we are. As a starting point, John will develop a football pie in the coming weeks that will be a true game-changer.
By Neil Gerrard
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