Green Earth Appeal and Lightspeed ePOS host Carbon Free Dining event

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Lightspeed ePOS and Green Earth Appeal have partnered to host the first event for Carbon Free Dining, a ground-breaking initiative aimed at introducing a more sustainable model for UK restaurants.

Under the programme, Carbon Free Dining plants a tree on behalf of a restaurant for every bill they present. Lightspeed ePOS then provides their platform to any restaurant under the initiative, subject to the number of trees a restaurant plants.

The initiative is already revolutionising the way local businesses and their customers give back to the environment in the fight against deforestation, extinction and global warming, having planted over 500,000 trees in more than 17 countries.

It has received support from three-Michelin star celebrity chef Marco Pierre White, James Martin and Gregory Marchand, who have since signed up their respective restaurants to Carbon Free Dining.

As part of the launch, Lightspeed and Green Earth Appeal are inviting the hospitality industry to Haz restaurant, East London, on 19th June, for an event focusing on how to create a sustainable restaurant model that will increase profitability by responding to the needs of today’s consumer. Members of the panel include Peter Hemingway, influencer and community manager at the Sustainable Restaurant Association (SRA), and Sandy Jarvis, sustainability advocate and Head chef of the renowned Culpeper restaurant in Shoreditch.

Lightspeed ePOS and Green Earth Appeal provide a cost-effective way for restaurants to showcase their corporate social responsibility at zero cost to the business.

Satinder Bindra, former director of communications for United Nations Environment, has been a strong advocate of the collaboration, stating, “[This is] an outstanding initiative which successfully merges the luxury of eating out with the joy of knowing we are simultaneously giving something back to nourish our planet”.

 Similarly, CEO and Founder of Lightspeed Dax Dasilva has also commented that, “Lightspeed was founded on pushing boundaries, empowering business and putting culture before code. By defining a new paradigm, we are redefining the industry. Carbon Free Dining is just one more step towards offering our ePOS partners and their customers a seamless way to achieve their own goals”.

 Register here for your free ticket here.

About Carbon Free Dining
Carbon Free Dining is a ground-breaking environmental certification programme managed by The United Nations Environment partner, Green Earth Appeal in partnership with Lightspeed. Simple to implement, Carbon Free Dining offers certification to those restaurants who demonstrate their passion for the environment. Carbon Free Dining-certified partners empower their diners to plant a tree in the developing world to counterbalance the environmental impact of their meal.
Learn more

About Lightspeed ePOS
Lightspeed ePOS is a cloud-based solution for independent restaurants and a Business Partner of the Institute of Hospitality.
Learn more

 

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The remarkable rise of Starbucks in China

56 alan hepburnOur man in Shanghai, Alan Hepburn FIH, provides an analysis of Starbucks’ expansion in China, a country with no tradition of coffee-drinking. What lessons are there for other western businesses looking to break into this vast market?

Last week I was sat in the 30,000 sq ft Starbucks Shanghai Roastery, about five minutes walk from my apartment in Shanghai. I was there for a business meeting, trying to decide between Sumatran, Ethiopian or Nicaraguan, when I realised I was next to a couple of friends. After a quick chat, it occured to me that even in a city of 35 million people with change being constant and exponential, it’s a small world.

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Howard Schultz at the opening of Starbuck’s Shanghai Roastery in December 2017

I arrived here in 2000 as manager of the Portman Ritz Carlton and remember chatting with Howard Schultz when he came to open the first Starbucks in the city (Beijing opened the first one in China in 1999). I somewhat naively asked if he was planning on opening many? He looked somewhat incredulous at my ill-judged question. “We expect 100 in the first year,” he said. They now have 3,000 stores in China and are opening one every 15 hours – projecting 5,000 by 2020.

I was new to China and frankly had not observed much coffee-drinking going on. But what I had missed was … well, pretty much everything.

What Starbucks saw in China was four things: firstly the growth potential in the middle/upper middle class who want to buy an upscale Western experience.

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The floor space of a Starbucks in China is substantially bigger than in the West. People have business meetings, social gatherings, go on dates and get interviewed for jobs in China’s Starbucks. The saying here is: “The first two thirds of your cup is for enjoying, the last third is for staying.” Three quarters of all coffee drunk in China is consumed by 25-35 year olds and 99% of retail coffee sales is instant, but that will change.

Secondly, Starbucks’ growth in China shows the importance of not removing the essence of what makes you successful elsewhere, but shows how this needs to be adapted. As Roy T Bennet once said: “The past is a place of reference, not a place of residence.”

The Macha Frappuccino (220 – 440 calories depending on size) is a huge seller here. Green tea powder, loads of cream, milk and vanilla syrup and not a hint of coffee in sight. I have struggled in the past to get a simple espresso, as very few people are drinking them in China. But that will change.

The Roastery here is a modern-day F&B masterpiece with all the theatre of coffee roasting, artisan bread-making and stunning retail. But take a look at what people are consuming and it’s a lot less coffee than you might expect. But, as I say, that will change.

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The Chinese are not big coffee drinkers, but that has not been a barrier to Starbucks’ success

Thirdly, brands which understand progression from entry-level to premium do very well here. There are famous dumpling shops where you pay four different prices according to where you consume the same dumpling.

The last thing Starbucks understood was marketing. Their social media presence was well-established and generally ahead of most Western brands in China during its first decade here. The rest tried catch-up and some succeeded but most failed. Telling your brand story here needs content and context and it better be entertaining and fun. I spoke with the head of marketing for one of the world’s biggest and coolest sports fashion brands two years ago and he was telling me they had just moved into mobile platform selling. That’s like arriving today in Scotland and telling them you just invented whisky.

Sadly, many Western brands can’t grasp the speed of change and that the Chinese consumer is dynamic, developing and learning quickly. By the time many companies work out their ‘China strategy’ the market may have moved or changed.

I’ve lost count of the number of UK companies (including the famous ones) I speak to and meet with who bring a rigid ‘what made us successful in the past will determine all our action for the future’ attitude and end up closing shop, heading home and blaming China.

Don’t get mad, get prepared. Starbucks’ next Roastery opens in Milan, the home of great coffee and design.  But before we mention coals and Newcastle, I’m betting Starbucks have that well-covered too.

Alan Hepburn FIH has spent more than 30 years in Asia in the hospitality and lifestyle sector. Having run some of the world’s best hotels , he then developed, opened and operated China’s first luxury lifestyle company: the multi-award winning Three On The Bund in Shanghai. The Hepburn Group is a Shanghai/Singapore-based boutique consultancy that works with hospitality and F&B companies from the West, helping them navigate the challenges of market-entry and growth in China and Asia.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The positive impact of the Royal Wedding by Neel Radia FIH, national chair, National Association of Care Catering (NACC)

Neel Radia image“The nation is gripped with Royal Wedding fever, as we prepare to celebrate the marriage of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle. The NACC’s members are certainly no exception. We’ve heard from care caterers and chefs up and down the country who are putting in a tremendous amount of effort to ensure that their residents enjoy a Royal Wedding experience to remember.

As with most celebrations, food is playing a leading role. Our members are using their expertise in creating delicious, nutritious meals, suitable for a care setting, to give the elderly and vulnerable they care for a real treat.

Indoor and outdoor festivities include, for example, coverage of the wedding on televisions and large screens, street parties, wedding buffets, wedding breakfasts, Afternoon Teas and BBQs, all featuring carefully-planned, mouth-watering menus, plus beautiful lemon and elderflower cakes to match the famous couple’s wedding cake of choice.

Residents will be involved in the preparations, helping decorate venues and cupcakes, making their own fascinators and being invited to dress in their finest attire for the big day. They will also enjoy music, entertainment, quizzes, dancing, and one care home has even reported that their wedding breakfast will include life-size cardboard cut-outs of Prince Harry and Meghan Markle themselves!

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As well as enjoying delicious food, residents will benefit emotionally and socially. The Royal Wedding provides a fantastic opportunity for them to socialise with fellow residents, staff and visiting relatives and community members. I’m sure the parties will be an enthusiastic subject of conversation in the build-up to the main event and for some time after. The celebrations could also, importantly, help evoke fond memories of their own weddings and family occasions, as well as Royal Weddings of the past. I’m sure some residents will have seen many a Royal Wedding over their lifetimes, including that of Her Majesty The Queen herself!

The NACC sends the Royal couple many congratulations on their wedding day and we wish our members and their residents a wonderful weekend of festivities.”

Institute of Hospitality Northern Ireland Awards for Professionalism. Winners Revealed

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The Institute of Hospitality Northern Ireland Branch has revealed the winners of the 23rd Institute of Hospitality Awards For Professionalism at a glittering event recently held at Titanic Belfast.

The highly coveted awards recognise talented individuals who have contributed to their business and the industry over the past year.  For 2018 there were 21 categories with four new categories including; Duty Manager of the Year, General Manager of the Future, Human Resource Manager of the Year and Unsung Hero.

This year saw a record number of entries with the independent judges citing this year as being extremely competitive with a very high standard of professionalism demonstrated by candidates.

The 23rd Institute of Hospitality Awards For Professionalism winners are:

Rachel Carson Outstanding Apprentice

Outstanding Apprentice of the Year Award sponsored by People 1st
Rachel Carson – Ballyrobin Country Lodge (pictured above)

Stefanie Brooks Human Resource Manager

Human Resource Manager of the Year sponsored by Gen Tech
Stefanie Brooks – Hastings Culloden Estate & Spa (above)

Caitriona Lennox Business Development Manager
Business Development Manager of the Year Award
sponsored by Johnsons Coffee
Caitriona Lennox – Mount Charles Group (above)

Bull & Ram Hospitality management team

Hospitality Management Team of the Year sponsored by firmus energy
Bull & Ram (above)

Roisin McErlean Independent Bar manager

Independent Bar Manager of the Year sponsored by Molson Coors
Roisin McErlean – The Tipsy Bird (above)

Jose Castano Duty Manager

Duty Manager of the Year sponsored by McAlindon Wines
Jose Castano – Hilton Templepatrick (above)

Friederich Machala Contract Catering Chef

Contract Catering Chef of the Year sponsored by Irwin’s Bakery
Friederich Machala – Sodexo (above)

Paul Cunningham Restaurant Chef

Restaurant Chef of the Year sponsored by Henderson Foodservice
Paul Cunningham – Brunels Restaurant Newcastle (above)

John Paul Taggart General Manager

General Manager of the Future sponsored by Tourism NI
John Paul Taggart – Odyssey Bowl (above)

Laura Wilson Unsung Hero

Unsung Hero of the Year sponsored by Net Affinity
Laura Wilson – Sodexo (above)

Thomas Stinton Student Potential

Student Management Potential Award sponsored by Stephens Catering
Thomas Stinton – Ulster University Business School (above)

The further winners are as follows:

Contract Catering Manager of the Year sponsored by Deli Lites
Caroline McClelland – Mount Charles Group

Supplier of the Year sponsored by NIMMS
Leah Robb – Robb Brothers Wine Merchants

Restaurateur of the Year sponsored by Hugh Jordan
Daryl Shields – Bull & Ram

Front of House Manager of the Year
sponsored by Avvio
Lucy Waugh – Bullitt Hotel

Lecturer of the Year sponsored by Institute of Hospitality
Sharon Rolt – Belfast Met

Hotel Chef of the Year sponsored by Get Fresh
Conor McClelland – Rayanne House

Hotelier of the Year sponsored by MKB Law
David Morrison – Killyhevlin Lakeside Hotel & Lodges

Coffee Shop / Café Manager of the Year sponsored by Lynas Foodservice
Cathy Moore – Loaf Café Bakery

Housekeeping Manager of the Year sponsored by Lilliput Services
Michael Joseph – The Old Inn

Denis Broderick Outstanding Contribution

The Outstanding Contribution Award sponsored by NI Jobs was presented to Denis Broderick (pictured above) for his commitment and innovative approach to achieve the very best for the industry and the support he provides to those around him.  The Institute of Hospitality President’s Award was presented to longstanding Northern Ireland committee member Michael Cafolla for his dedication and service to the Institute of Hospitality over the years.

Chair of the Institute of Hospitality Northern Ireland Branch, Marianne Hood FIH commented: “We are delighted to reveal the 23rd Institute of Hospitality Awards for Professionalism 2018 winners. Over the years the awards have increasingly become an important event for individual industry professionals in Northern Ireland.  Not only do they recognise talented individuals, who have contributed so much to their business and the industry over the past year, but demonstrate a clear commitment to developing and maintaining professionalism within this fantastic sector. We are indebted to a range of long-term, credible sponsors and partners and we thank them for their continued support without which the awards could not happen. We are also indebted to our dedicated voluntary committee who are committed to supporting our industry.  We also congratulate our longstanding committee member Michael Cafolla who received the President’s Awards in recognition for his dedication and service.”

Peter Ducker FIH, Chief Executive of the Institute of Hospitality, added: “Over the past 23 years the Institute of Hospitality NI committee has constantly raised the profile of the awards, making them more popular and prestigious than ever. The committed team provides an excellent awards process and event which promotes professionalism and encourages continued professional development within the industry. We congratulate all of the winners and thank them for helping to raise the standards of professionalism within hospitality.”

For further details, visit Facebook InstituteofHospitalityNI,
Twitter @IOH_NI #IOHNI18.

Quality employers support Passion4Hospitality 2018

untitledThe eighth edition of Passion4Hospitality, the Institute of Hospitality’s annual student and industry networking event, benefited from an extensive Careers Fair featuring nearly 40 companies looking for new talent.

Around 300 hospitality management students attended the all-day event which took place at Novotel London West on Monday (12 March). Students came from UK universities and colleges and from Stenden University in the Netherlands. They gained a wealth of advice on landing the right job during the interactive conference programme. They also had time to take full advantage of the excellent Careers Fair to make contact with the high-quality employers who are actively recruiting.

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Represented at The Careers Fair were Royal Automobile Club, Victory Services Club, Shangri-La at the Shard, Georgian House, The Ritz, Dorchester Collection, Four Seasons Hotel London at Park Lane, Doyle Collection/The Bloomsbury, BaxterStorey, Evolve Hospitality, Novotel London West, Sarova Hotels, Foxhills, Gravetye Manor, Bespoke Hotels, Edition Hotels, Nadler Hotels, Hyatt, Waldorf Hilton, Iconic Luxury Hotels Group, The Savoy, Harbour Hotels Group, CH&Co, Splendid Hospitality, Exclusive Hotels and Venues, Catapult, Jurys Inn, Dorsett Hotels, Mandarin Oriental, Como Hotels and Resorts, SpaYse International, The Principal London, National Careers Service, Hospitality Assured, Dukes Collection, and Firmdale.

The HOTS Business Game runners-up from Stenden, Holland

Teams from six universities competed in the HOTS Business Game competition to run a virtual resort hotel. The winning team (above) was from Glion Institute of Higher Education, London. The runners-up came from Stenden University in the Netherlands. The University of Brighton came in third place. The competition was administered by Peter Russell MIH of the Russell Partnership.

Peter Ducker FIH, chief executive, Institute of Hospitality, introduced the event by telling students: “No one will ever care about your career as much as you do, so the sooner you start planning and setting yourself goals, the better.”

Get that job!

During a panel discussion, students were advised on how to stand out. Match the tone and message of your covering letter to the vacancy, said Shona Rye, director, Your Invisible Partner. Use social media as a research tool and go into the interview armed with information about the company, so that you are well-prepared when asked to contribute questions at the end of your interview, said Martin Smith, Collins King & Associates. Do not simply send in your CV and wait for a reply, said Neil Graham, managing director, SpaYse International. A follow-up phone call will help, and during the interview itself, recruiters are interested in personality.

Diversity dilemma

Asked whether she was in favour of quotas for female managers in hospitality, Debrah Dhugga FIH MI, managing director, Dukes Collection, replied: “I would never want to be given a job just because I was a woman.”

She added she would like to see more women at executive level: “A diverse board room generates a richness, a wider viewpoint in a world where women are increasingly a powerful force as consumers and business leaders.”

Diverse workplaces in general have advantages in terms of attaining customer loyalty, she said: “Value everyone in your organisation. Diversity refers to age, disability, religion, gender and more, and goes beyond just legal compliance. International work experience is of value and managers must be ready to harness the diversity of the workforce.”

Spotlight on the sectors

20180312_0528This panel discussion highlighted some of the lesser-known areas of employment in hospitality such as foodservice and private members clubs. Mark Field FIH, operations director, The Victory Services Club said that he found working in members clubs to be “a tremendous working environment where I can use my skills as a hotelier.” Jessica Berry, talent manager for The Doyle Collection, highlighted the similarities between her current role in human resources and her previous experience in event management. Delphine Delacroix AIH, MICE office manager at Novotel London West, added that working in events means that no two days are ever the same.

Adam Rowledge FIH, general manager, Georgian House, provided an extremely well-devised and useful A-Z of personal brand promotion. Using video well will give you a huge advantage on social media, he said, and concluded his presentation with a quote from Charles Buxton: “Experience shows that success is due less to ability than to zeal.”

Breaking the ice

Rory Kelly-Naughton, hotels business manager, Evolve, provided expert advice on networking. “Make contacts and then maintain them. I got my job with Evolve because I know the owner, even after six years. ”

Peter Ducker FIH concluded: “Passion4Hospitality is a highlight in our calendar and I always come away feeling inspired and energised. The speakers gave their time freely to help make today possible. My thanks to them; to all our sponsors; to the exhibitors at the Careers Fair; and also to Michael Sloan FIH and his team at the Novotel London West for their generosity as venue sponsors.”

Sponsors

The headline sponsor of Passion4Hospitality 2018 was Planday. The other sponsors were arena4finance, aslotel, the Council for Hospitality Management Education (CHME), Critiquie, Fresh Montgomery, Glion, HOTS, Novotel, Savoy Educational Trust, Stenden, SpaYse International.

 

35 of UK’s Top 100 restaurant groups now loss-making – up 75% in just a year

  • Oversaturated market, minimum wage hike put pressure on restaurants
  • Another minimum wage rise just weeks away

35 of the UK’s Top 100 restaurant groups are now loss-making, up 75% from just 20 last year, shows research by UHY Hacker Young, the national accountancy group.
UHY Hacker Young says that trading conditions have become increasingly difficult for restaurant chains dealing with oversaturation in the market as well as rising costs.
The firm adds that this research comes on the back of the high-profile struggles of several major restaurant chains in recent weeks, including:

  • Jamie’s Italian, started by Jamie Oliver, which has closed 12 branches as part of a Company Voluntary Arrangement (CVA) to restructure its £71.5m debt
  • Byron, the burger chain, which may close up to 20 of its 67 branches following a period of paying reduced rent
  • Prezzo, the Italian chain, which is expected to close some of its 300 branches as part of a restructuring
  • Strada, another Italian chain, which closed 11 branches over the festive period
  • Barbecoa, another Jamie Oliver chain, which entered administration in mid-February
  • EAT, the sandwich chain, which was rumoured in early February to be considering closing some of its 100 branches

UHY Hacker Young says that pressures of competing with numerous similar ‘fast casual’ restaurants in an overcrowded high street are a major driver of many large restaurant groups registering losses over the past year.

It adds that the National Minimum wage, which has risen by an above-inflation 19% to £7.50 per hour over the last five years, has added a substantial cost burden to large restaurant chains. From April 2018, the minimum wage will rise even further to £7.83.

Peter Kubik, Partner at UHY Hacker Young, comments: “More than a third of the biggest companies in the restaurant sector are losing money, and there is little respite on the horizon.”

“Pressures on the restaurant sector have been building for years, and the last year has pushed a number of major groups to breaking point.”

“With Brexit hanging over consumers like a dark cloud, restaurants can’t expect a bailout from a surge in discretionary spending.”

“Consumers only have a finite amount of spending power when it comes to eating out, and the oversaturation of the market means that groups that fall foul of changing trends can very easily fail.”

“The Government has ratcheted up costs with a series of above-inflation rises in the minimum wage, and we are just weeks away from another 4.4% rise in April. That will be tough for a lot of restaurants to absorb.”

About UHY Hacker Young:

 The UHY Hacker Young Group is one of the UK’s Top 15 accountancy networks with 110 partners and more than 620 professional staff working from 22 locations around the country. The offices within the Group provide a wide range of accounting, tax and business advisory services, with a reputation for integrity and reliability within the financial community, and particularly with London’s Stock Markets. UHY Hacker Young are also ranked 15th in the ARL Corporate Advisers Rankings Guide amongst other UK audit firms for advising London Stock Exchange listed companies.

UHY Hacker Young is a founder member of the UHY International network with offices in every major financial centre in the world. Further information can be found at www.uhy-uk.com

 

How restaurants are reacting to Vegetarian Month

March is vegetarian month. Recent news shows that an estimated 29% of evening meals in the UK are vegetarian or vegan. These numbers only seem to be increasing, but just how is the hospitality industry reacting? Wayne Redge reports

Reports show that sales of meat-free ready meals were up by 15% in January compared to 12 months before. Vegan numbers went up from 150,000 in 2006 to 540,000 just a decade later, with 1.2 million vegetarians in addition to this in the UK. Not only that, but there has been an uprising of ‘flexitarians’, those who reduce their meat consumption by choosing to have meat-free days. As a result, evidence shows that 25% of people in Britain have cut back on how much meat they eat. With all of these figures on the rise, the transitions to a meat-free way of living aren’t just a ‘fad’.

Signs of the hospitality industry acknowledging these statistics has come with many different reactions. Nando’s, the Afro-Portuguese chain restaurant known for its chicken, has been consistently adding to its range of vegetarian and vegan options over the past few years. The spiced chicken giant has now announced that two more vegetarian dishes will be added to its menu: golden brown halloumi sticks served with a pot of sweet chilli jam dip to start, alongside a new main of Veggie Cataplana (a South African inspired stew dish.)

A host of vegetarian restaurants are also popping up, giving people who have adopted this lifestyle a lot more options. Run by former mentee of Gordon Ramsay, Minal Patel, “Prashad” is a 2 rosette and Bib Gourmand standard Indian cuisine restaurant. The personalised and crafted menu boards created by Smart Hospitality encase an all vegetarian menu that has been the talk of popular review site, Trip Advisor, since the restaurant opened its doors. Receiving the “Most Talked About Restaurant On Trip Advisor Award” and a “Certificate of Excellence” on the site, it is proof of the popularity that a vegetarian restaurant can receive by focusing its efforts towards a collective audience.

January of this year saw a mass of high-profile restaurants trying out full vegan menus or dishes for ‘Veganuary’. Harvey Nichols brought a full vegan menu to its OXO Tower restaurant in the shape of a three course vegan meal and vegan wine list. Upon opening their menu cover, guests were welcomed by the sights of Grilled Tofu with Miso and a Poached Pear and Blackberry Dessert.

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Even Michelin Star chef, Tom Aitken took part in his Tom’s Kitchen restaurant . Teaming up with vegetarian burger company, The Vurger Co, he served up a hoisin glazed mushroom patty with pak choi, red cabbage and crunchy spring onions ( pictured above). Due to the success of this vegan burger, he has adopted a vegetarian burger to his main menu since then.

The amount of vegan festivals has seen a massive increase too, with at least 75 festivals lined up for 2018 in the UK alone. The festivals are a celebration of the natural lifestyle whilst also introducing its participants to new vegan restaurants and foods that they may not have tried before. Restaurants are creating pop ups at these events to promote themselves to the vegan following and gain some new supporters.

So, with the popularity of no-meat lifestyles on the rise, it is clear that restaurants have an opportunity to increase their offerings and enable themselves to appeal to a wider clientele. If 25% of evening meals being eaten are meat free, would restaurants do well to make 25% of their offerings meat free? It might even serve as a cost effective alternative whilst not compromising on quality.

Wayne Redge is marketing assistant, Smart Hospitality Supplies