What is ACE?

The Association of Catering Excellence is a lively, innovative organisation that encourages caterers and associates from all sectors of our industry to network face to face, exchange ideas, socialise and generally keep in touch. The technology age combined with our hectic work schedules has led to our reliance on emails and texts to keep in touch. We bring the fun back into communication through a series of superb events. Our membership includes a cross section of managers, chefs, consultants, students, suppliers etc. from the Hospitality and Food Service Sector.

We provide a forum for networking for all levels of staff within the catering industry through a series of informal and fun related events.

Press Release

17th July 2014

The Brookwood Partnership sweeps the board at ACE Sustains 2014

On Wednesday 16th July the Association of Catering Excellence (ACE) announced the winners of ACE Sustains 2014 at their annual summer networking event with over 200 guests at London Zoo. ACE Sustains was launched last year to celebrate those that stand out in the food service sector for innovation in their approach to sustainability and corporate social responsibility.

There were 2 awards, one for an organisation, the other for an individual within an organisation.

read more…

Corporate winners

The corporate award was given to The Brookwood Partnership in recognition of their Planet Matters scheme, a CSR initiative that sees the organisation band together to generate environmentally friendly and sustainable ideas that they can implement within the schools that they work with.

Launched in 2007, the scheme goes from strength to strength. Amongst other things, they have reduced plate waste by 47%, changed to environmentally friendly chemicals for cleaning, achieved a reduction in deliveries of 30% against the industry average, and promoted healthy eating with sustainable and locally sourced ingredients. In the last 5 years, they have raised £120,000 to help build a primary school in Uganda. They also support various external causes such as Magic Breakfast that sponsors breakfast for underprivileged children in the UK.

Managing Partner, Sue Parfett puts its success down to strong lines of communication. “The fact that we are feeding children is a critical aspect of why it works. It's all about finding ways of encouraging children to eat well and not to waste food. As a company we celebrate success. For example, the winners of tonight's awards will see their names in headlights, pictures of them and their awards will be going to our sites, and we will talk about it at our managers' conference”.

Bartlett Mitchell and Kent Frozen Foods were in second and third place.

People winner

The people award went to Sandy Hayton, Chef Manager and the team at Greenfield School in Woking (The Brookwood Partnership) for reducing plate waste in their dining room.

They use an imaginative superhero character, Wendal B Green, who was the brainchild of Sandy. She says “Having come from a fine food background, I was shocked by the amount of food waste in the school. To address this, I wanted to do something that the children could not only relate to, but enjoy supporting too. Wendal now appears on the noticeboards to deliver messages to the pupils about reducing waste, and they can chart their progress through stars that are awarded to classes that achieve their targets.”

There is a bucket at the end of each table in the dining room for all plate waste, which is weighed and the results are displayed on the noticeboard. Children are encouraged to ask for regular or large portion sizes and to eat everything on their plates. This has effectively cut down on waste as well as ordering, with a more accurate idea of requirements coming through. This alone has resulted in cost savings of £400 a month.

Future plans for this concept include the development of a cousin for Wendal to deliver more messages about saving energy and a whole host of other environmental issues.

The initiative had such an impact on the school that it has since been rolled out across the whole of Brookwood's business.

For their prize, Sandy and her team will enjoy dinner at Grain Store, Bruno Loubet's acclaimed restaurant in Kings Cross. The National Restaurant Awards and SRA named Grain Store The UK's most Sustainable Restaurant 2013 and just two weeks ago they won Menu of the Year 2014 at the Cateys. The prize was sponsored by Mondelez.

Beverley Richardson, General Manager at Wakehurst Place (Ampersand) was in second place, and joint third place went to Vacherin's Sustainability Focus Group and Phil Clerkin, Account Manager at Credit Suisse (Restaurant Associates).

Runner up prizes were dinner at Brigade Restaurant (ACE's chosen charity) and Urban Beekeeping experiences with Dr Luke Dixon, sponsored by TuGo and e-foods.

The panel of expert judges included Shirley Duncalf, Head of Sustainability for Bidvest 3663; Brendan Hunter, Hospitality Manager, WRAP; Mark Lineham, Managing Director, Sustainable Restaurant Association; Mark Jankovich, Chief Executive, Delphis Eco.

A host of commendations were made to recognise and reward some of the most outstanding ideas and initiatives that were put forward including Elior's ‘You & Life’ programme, Bartlett Mitchell's ‘Green Bee’, Hannah Carmichael, Gram UK's green paper, CH& Co's sustainable fish commitment and more.

A lifetime achievement award was presented to Vivreau's Stephen Charles for his contribution to sustainability across the hospitality sector.

Judge Mark Lineham said “There has been a clear improvement in the focus of the entries since last year. Sustainability is an irreversible trend, and businesses that aren't doing it now will need to start doing it. We see so much waste and over indulgence in our industry. Someone has to be brave enough to break the mould.”

Fellow judge, Mark Jankovich added “We've seen some great stories with really well thought through objectives and plans to support them. The beauty of these awards is that other businesses can take away ideas to implement in their own organisation. It's a non-competitive space, and sharing ideas is positive. I would urge those that did not enter this year to start thinking about their entries for next year.”

– Ends –

Beyond Food Foundation, ACE's supported charity

Beyond Food Foundation work with people who have been at risk of, or experienced homelessness. Their goal is to motivate them to gain meaningful employment, inspired by Chef Founder Simon Boyle and the team.

www.beyondfoodfoundation.org.uk

ACE Sustains 2014 was sponsored & supported by
  • Mondelez
  • Tugo
  • E-foods
  • Bibendum
  • BPM (British Premium Meats)
  • Reynolds
  • Direct Seafoods
  • Angel HR
  • Nestlé
  • Gram
  • Bottle Green
  • Remerco
  • Unilever
  • Love Smoothies
  • Kff
  • Cheesemakers of Canterbury
  • Simply Ice Cream
  • Bennett Opie
  • The Kent Potato Company
  • Stephen's
  • Pfalgraz
  • The London Tea Company
  • Vivreau Advanced Water Systems
  • Delphis Eco
  • Bidvest 3663
For more information please contact:

Jane Brocklebank
jane@janebrocklebank.co.uk
01628 675584
07968 323177

About the Association of Catering Excellence (ACE)

ACE is a networking forum which runs innovative and stimulating networking events to provide relationship building opportunities for professionals in the catering industry. Further information is available on the ACE Website – www.acegb.org

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March news from ACE

30th January 2014

New venue for ACE Sustains 2014

Last year the Association of Catering Excellence (ACE) held the first ACE Sustains competition, presenting a new industry award that recognises the companies and individuals or teams that stand out in the food service sector for innovation in their approach to sustainability and corporate social responsibility. The winners were Caterers Linen Supply, due to their environmentally friendly steamless laundry, their pledge to reduce linen miles and their innovative range of recycled EkoChef clothing; and Caroline Meledo from Sodexo for initiating a company-wide scheme to recycle coffee grounds in biodegradable packaging made by prisoners at HMP Peterborough.

Entries are now invited for ACE Sustains 2014, with the winners announced at the ACE Summer Event, which will take place at London Zoo on Wednesday 16th July. The Zoological Society London (ZSL) runs conservation programmes worldwide and works with local communities to promote sustainability.

read more…

The deadline for entries is Friday 25th April. If you or your company are working to create a more sustainable way of doing business, don't miss this chance to shout about it. Here are just some of the entries that were commended last year:

Bartlett Mitchell at Asmec introduced the concept of reusing coffee clutches by creating a loyalty card scheme whereby the clutch is stamped 12 times in return for a free coffee. This initiative is both entrepreneurial and environmentally friendly in that it saves money on clutches and loyalty cards and reduces waste simultaneously.

Lusso's team at Investec won approval for their unique Ugly Fish Friday concept, that celebrates fish approved by the Marine Stewardship Council and highlights the issues facing the UK Fishing Industry.

The Clink Restaurant at HMP Highdown is a charity committed to reducing re-offending rates through specialised skills training such as Horticulture, Bee-Keeping and Catering. The Clink also promotes self-sufficiency and reduces their carbon footprint through robust waste management and recycling programmes.

Vacherin worked at engaging the voluntary commitment from individuals actually operating in full-time roles within their business to drive and support their sustainability initiatives. Gerard Jacob had a worthy mention for heading up their ‘Vacherin Cares’ programme, which is embraced by the whole team. Lexington were commended for their Sustainability & Community ‘Star Awards programme’, as was Gram UK for their ‘Green Paper’ research and report initiative that has become a point of reference for the entire foodservice industry.

Debbie Rosher, representing last year's winner of the Corporate Award, The Caterers Linen Supply said “We heard about the competition at an ACE event, and thought we should enter, having built our new factory 3 years ago. But we never thought we'd win! We use 70% less water than a standard laundry, and the staff are all on board with our sustainable initiatives. We'll keep going and continue to look for new innovations.”

Jeni Edwards, organiser of the event and ACE's chair said “We were overwhelmed by the quality and number of entries we received and the standard is now set for an even bigger and more exciting competition next time. There are a lot of fantastic sustainable initiatives out there in the catering industry, and we want to celebrate that. It will be interesting to see how businesses and people rise to the challenge now and continue to come up with new and innovative ways to implement change and make a difference.”

New venue for the popular ACE Quiz

The ACE committee is thrilled to have secured an exciting new venue for the annual Quiz Night – it will take place at Lloyds, London EC3 on Wednesday 12th March. Teams from across the catering industry will be pitting their wits against each other, and it's a real opportunity for ‘levelling the playing field’ with teams made up of people from all roles and departments across a variety of catering and hospitality organisations.

The trophy is to be re-named in honour of ACE patron Sheila Mitchell MBE, who sadly passed away last year. Back in 1976 as Chairman of the Industrial Catering Association, Sheila set up Catermind, a quiz competition involving over 2,000 students from over 200 catering colleges. The competition ran until 1992, and in 1980, Magnus Magnusson hosted the final which included such rounds as the ‘History of Custard Creams 1920 to 1975’.

Upcoming events for 2014

The Association of Catering Excellence (ACE) is a lively and innovative organisation that promotes face to face networking for all those that work in the food service industry. The membership includes a cross section of managers, chefs, consultants, students and suppliers from the Hospitality and Food Service Sector and there are a series of fun and informal events throughout the year. Coming up are:

Wednesday 12th March ACE Quiz at Lloyds, London EC3 (new venue)
Friday 25th April Deadline for entries for ACE Sustains competition
Wednesday 16th July ACE Summer event and ACE Sustains awards at London Zoo
Wednesday 17th September Ready Steady Cook competition, Imperial College, London
Thursday 6th November ACE Wine Dinner

For more information about ACE and for membership details visit – www.acegb.org

For more information please contact:
Jane Brocklebank
jane@janebrocklebank.co.uk
01628 675584
07968 323177

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Press Release

Movers and shakers at all levels enjoy the Association of Catering Excellence Wine Dinner

15th November 2013

On Friday 8th November, the Association of Excellence held its annual Wine Dinner at the magnificent Plaisterers' Hall, One London Wall.

Chair of ACE Jeni Edwards welcomed the guests, acknowledging all the new faces in the room. Referring to the social nature of the event, Jeni said “I'm a real advocate of the digital world we now live in, and Twitter has changed the way we all keep in touch BUT I think it's fabulous that we still support face-to-face interaction in our industry too.”

read more…

Sponsored by The Holmes Group, the event attracted over 160 guests from the catering industry who were treated to a four course meal, with each course accompanied by a carefully chosen wine. Head Chef Richie Hobdell and the brigade from Create Food & Party Design put together the sumptuous menu, and the wines were provided by Casa Vinicola Zonin, Italy's largest private vineyard and wine making complex. Each wine was introduced by Zonin UK's Sales & Marketing Manager, Laura Pigoni. The cheese course was provided by Cheese+, suppliers of artisan cheeses and specialist deli products.

Guests included a range of people, from Managing Directors and Chief Executives to sales, customer services and accounts staff. Ronan Harte, Managing Director of Holroyd Howe said “We have brought employees from our support office tonight, the people that really make the business happen. It's usually the senior management team that get to go to these sorts of events, but we've brought Michelle and Gavin from our accounts team, and Damian and Roger from our chef trainer team. They're the ones that really deserve to be rewarded for dealing with our customers on a daily basis.”

ACE Ready Wine Dinner 2013

The raffle raised over £2000, and the proceeds went to Adopt A School, ACE's chosen charity for this year. Sponsored by ABDA Design and Off to Work, the prizes included dinner for four at Langan's Brasserie and £250 to spend at Jason Atherton's restaurant in Tower 42. Sara Jayne Stanes, OBE and Chief Executive of The Royal Academy of Arts spoke about the primary school children that have been introduced to a new way of looking at food. She read out a quote from a boy in Scotland “I learnt to always try the food and appreciate that you got anything. So guys, be grateful to anyone who cooks you food even if it's something you have not tried. I'm a person who would forget but now Albert Roux came in I will never forget what he told me. That one thing changed me inside. If he is looking at this, thanks to him. I will be happy to the man who changed my life. I will miss him if he does not come back!”

The entertainment was provided by Seduce Bands, who have performed at Ronnie Scott's and The Jazz Cafe as well as playing alongside world famous artists such as Jamiroquai and Tom Jones.

David Gravells, Chief Executive of lead sponsor The Holmes Group observed “We need to be talking to movers and shakers at every opportunity. The people here influence and are responsible for procurement-decisions are made at every level, and you never know who influences the decision makers.”

ACE supporter Weston Wright, one of the raffle prize winners, from British Premier Meats said “I originally joined ACE because I realised that some of our key customers were already members. The ACE events provide a great networking opportunity, and a chance to share a glass of wine with like-minded people in a relaxed atmosphere – it's a lot less stuffy than meeting in an office.”

The next ACE event is the Quiz Night on 12th March – contact admin@acegb.org for details.

– Ends –

About the Sponsors

The Holmes Group – The Holmes Group design and manufacture bespoke food service counters and kitchens. www.holmesgroup.co.uk

Casa Vinicola Zonin – Zonin UK is the UK branch of Casa Vinicola Zonin. Master Vintners since 1821, the Zonin family operates Italy's largest private vine growing and winemaking complex. The house produces 25 million bottles and exports its wines to 75 countries on all continents. www.zonin.co.uk

Cheese+ – Cheese+ is a specialist cheese company supplying the finest artisan cheese, charcuterie, and olives plus everything else you would expect to find in your favourite delicatessen. www.cheese-plus.co.uk

About the Charity – Chefs Adopt a School

Chefs Adopt a School was founded in 1990 by the Academy of Culinary Arts – Britain's leading professional association of head chefs, head pastry chefs, restaurant managers and suppliers. It is a national charity which teaches children, in a holistic way, about food, food provenance, food growing, healthy eating, nutrition, hygiene and cookery. Professional chefs deliver sessions in the classroom which range in content from the four tastes and five senses to advanced practical cookery.

The charity reaches over 21,000 children every year working with primary, secondary, Special Educational Needs and hospital schools as well as pupil referral units, sports centres and food festivals.

www.chefsadoptaschool.org.uk

About the Association of Catering Excellence (ACE)

The Ready Steady Cook event epitomises the spirit of ACE – to get staff at all levels within the catering industry networking and having fun together. Chair, Jeni Edwards says “We challenge each other, compete against each other, and most importantly chat to each other.”

The membership includes a cross section of managers, chefs, consultants, students and suppliers from the Hospitality and Food Service Sector.

Throughout the year, ACE runs a series of innovative and stimulating networking events to provide relationship building opportunities for professionals in the catering industry.

Further information on joining ACE is available on the website – www.acegb.org

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Press Release

Sheila Mitchell, MBE

27th September 2013

Sheila Mitchell MBE

This week, the catering industry lost a much admired and respected colleague, Sheila Mitchell MBE who passed away on Monday after a short illness. Her funeral will be held on Tuesday 1st October in Kingston, Surrey – industry colleagues and peers are welcome to attend. Full details are available from admin@acegb.org.

Jeni Edwards, Chair of the Association of Catering Excellence (ACE) paid tribute to Sheila last night at ACE's annual Ready Steady Cook event. Sheila was a part of the Association of Catering Excellence for over 50 years and her contribution was significant during that time. “We pay tribute to Sheila and salute her achievements. She would be so pleased to know that we have all had this opportunity to remember her and bid her farewell. She would also want us to continue on and enjoy this evening as we do every time. She would certainly want us to keep challenging each other, competing against each other and chatting to each other, which is what this spirit of ACE is all about.”

read more…

Sheila's achievements

Sheila joined what was then called the ICA (Industrial Catering Association) in 1961 and, held the position of National Chair from 1974-1977.

In 1976, Sheila, along with Mair Davison and Marc Verstringhe, organised a competition called Catermind, which ran until 1992. This event involved 205 catering colleges, 2,000 students, 14 heats and a final at The Barbican Concert Hall.

In 1986, Sheila was awarded the Caterer and Hotelkeeper ‘Catey Award’ for Industrial Caterer of the Year.

In 1990 she became Vice President of the European Catering Association (GB) representing GB on the International Board ECA.

In 1996 she was given a Lifetime Achievement award presented by Cost Sector Catering.

She was also awarded Freeman of the City of London in 1996 and always wore her commemorative shield brooch with pride.

In 1997 she became President of the European Catering Association (GB).

Sheila was awarded an MBE in the 2004/2005 New Year's Honours List for her contribution to and promotion of the catering industry, something she was immensely and deservedly very proud of.

Also in 1998, she became Governor at Maple Infants School Surbiton and from 1999-2000 held the position of Chairman of Governors.

Since 1998 she has undertaken voluntary work at Bray Chapel Bookshop, St Georges Chapel, Windsor.

Sheila did a great deal of voluntary work and was involved for over twenty years in steering the organisation of Student Competitions and working with Colleges to encourage the young to progress into careers in the Industry.

She remained on the ACE Council Committee until this week.

Sheila's background

Sheila was educated at Grey Coat Hospital School in Westminster, and went on to do a catering course at a College in South East London and a year of further education in Switzerland. She then joined British Airways as Catering Manager, gaining experience in all departments before spending time at Holland, Hannen & Cubitts, responsible for their catering sites throughout London and the Home Counties.

After that she worked at Sanofi Winthrop Pharmaceutical Manufacturers (Sterling Winthrop) for many years. She opened their staff catering facilities in London and was then promoted to Controller of all Group Services, looking after their catering throughout the UK.

For more information, please contact admin@acegb.org or telephone 01483 765111

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Press Release

Lexington claim victory for the second year running at Ready Steady Cook

1st October 2013

Lexington were once again victorious at last week's Ready Steady Cook team challenge, organised by ACE. There was only one girl in the competition, and she was one half of the winning duo, Ben Tamlyn and Hannah Westphalen.

The event took place on Thursday 26th September at Imperial College in London, with fourteen teams from the contract catering industry competing against each other.

read more…

The atmosphere was buzzing with an audience of over 200 enjoying an assortment of delicious smells, with images of the chefs in action projected onto the screens as the competitors battled against each other. The challenge was to prepare a prize dish from the ingredients supplied with just 30 minutes to do it in.

Judge Jason Atherton picked out Lexington for their clean and efficient workspace, their balance of flavours, and the fact that the food tasted of what it's supposed to taste of. He pointed out that clever cooks understand restraint, and that less is more.

This year's ‘mystery’ ingredients included mackerel, partridge, pomegranate, cauliflower, a selection of fresh fruit and vegetables and a range of store cupboard ingredients.

The winning menu was Seared Mackerel, Asian Soused Cauliflower, Sweet Potato and Cauliflower Stem Slaw with Bramley Apple Ile Flotante for dessert.

The Lexington team were delighted with the result, and said it was totally unexpected. Hannah said “You're always overcritical of your own dishes. But we came in with a clear head – there were a lot of ingredients to choose from and we kept it simple”

The other judges were Sara Jayne Stanes, Chief Executive of the Academy of Culinary Arts and Philip Corrick, Executive Chef at the RAC Club.

Sara Jayne pointed out “This is a brilliant challenge that makes them think on their feet and is an inspiring learning experience. It certainly gets the mind creatively rolling. The room was full of stars with ‘bags’ of very serious talent. However, sometimes over-creativity can be a disadvantage – especially in such a tight time frame. Simplicity is the key. The entire event was a blueprint for any professional operation – well done ACE – and it was a privilege to be involved”.

In second place were Artizian and in third place, Sodexo Prestige. As well as their trophies, certificates and champagne, each winning chef along with their guest will enjoy a special lunch at the prestigious Fat Duck restaurant in Bray. The prize includes a guided tour around the kitchens – a real treat for the winning team.

– Ends –

ACE Ready Steady Cook 2013 winners presentation

L to R: Sara Jayne Stanes (CEO Academy of Culinary Arts); Jeni Mitchell (ACE Chair); Ben Tamlyn (Lexington); Hannah Westphalen (Lexington); Mark Brooker (Marketing Director, McFarlane Telfer)

Sponsors
Peros logo

The Ready Steady Cook event is kindly sponsored by Peros. Established in 2000, Peros offers a comprehensive range of over 350 Fairtrade, Organic and ethically traded products, available across the UK on next day delivery.
www.peros.co.uk

The 8 induction hobs used at the event are provided by Induced Energy
www.inducedenergy.com

The prize of a tour and lunch at The Fat Duck is supplied by Mcfarlane Telfer who provide maintenance services to commercial kitchens.
www.mcft.com

Residents at St Mungo's hostel for the homeless will benefit from the event. Not only will they be treated to the gourmet leftovers, but all the unused ingredients and the equipment including pans and chopping boards will be donated to the hostel and put to good use.

Next event – Wine Dinner, 8th November at Plaisterers Hall, London Wall

To book, please contact Louise Willis – Tel: 01483 765111, Email admin@acegb.org

About the Association of Catering Excellence (ACE)

The Ready Steady Cook event epitomises the spirit of ACE – to get staff at all levels within the catering industry networking and having fun together. Chair, Jeni Edwards says “We challenge each other, compete against each other, and most importantly chat to each other.”

The membership includes a cross section of managers, chefs, consultants, students and suppliers from the Hospitality and Food Service Sector.

Throughout the year, ACE runs a series of innovative and stimulating networking events to provide relationship building opportunities for professionals in the catering industry.

Further information on joining ACE is available on the website – www.acegb.org

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Press Release

A new chair for the Association of Catering Excellence

19th July 2013

On Wednesday 17th July, Ruston Toms of Blue Apple Catering handed over the chain of office to Jeni Edwards at the ACE Sustains Awards. The evening took place at The Crystal, Siemens' landmark ‘urban sustainability’ building in London's Royal Victoria Dock.

Ruston said “I've really enjoyed my 2 years of being Chair, and although it can be a challenging role, it is extremely rewarding and we've run some fantastic events. I couldn't have done it without the help of my wing-woman, Deputy Chair Jeni Edwards, and I'm delighted to be handing over to such capable hands. Welcome also to Paul Hurren, Managing Director of Lusso, who now takes the position of Deputy Chair”

read more…

Ruston Toms and Jeni Edwards

Stepping up to accept the role, Jeni Edwards said: “I am thrilled to be taking on the chairmanship role at ACE for the next two years and am looking forward to working with Paul Hurren as Deputy Chair and the committee to drive the organisation forward. I joined the ACE Council in 2007 and have always been very pro-active in organising and supporting all the annual events. My first key role was to organise the first summer party on HMS Belfast. It was a huge success and set the standard for future summer events at London Zoo and then at the BMA, where we also introduced The Dragon's Den competition, which ran successfully for two years. The ACE Sustains competition replaces that now and shows how we will continue to focus on issues that are important to the catering & hospitality sector, engaging and encouraging people at all levels to share best practice and inspire change. Ours is a fun, friendly and highly competitive industry and our aim is to bring both caterers and suppliers together at ACE events to network and keep challenging each other. This can only be a good thing!”

– Ends –

The next ACE event is the annual ACE Ready Steady Cook Competition on 26th September. Full details available on the ACE website acegb.org

For more information please contact:

Jane Brocklebank
jane@janebrocklebank.co.uk
01628 675584
07968 323177

About the Association of Catering Excellence (ACE)

ACE is a networking forum which runs innovative and stimulating networking events to provide relationship building opportunities for professionals in the catering industry. Further information is available on the ACE Website – www.acegb.org

Download this press release as a PDF

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Press Release

The Caterers Linen Supply win the inaugural ACE Sustains competition

18th July 2013

On Wednesday 17th July the Association of Catering Excellence (ACE) announced the winners of ACE Sustains 2013, a new competition that recognises those that stand out in the food service sector for innovation in their approach to sustainability and corporate social responsibility. The prize giving took place at The Crystal, Siemens' landmark global urban sustainability centre at Royal Victoria Docks.

There were 2 awards, one for an organisation, the other for an individual within an organisation.

read more…

Corporate winners

The corporate award was given to The Caterers Linen Supply in recognition of their initiatives throughout the organisation. They proudly claim to be “The UK's most Environmentally Friendly Laundry”, leading the field with their new factory (the UK's first environmentally friendly steamless laundry), genuine pledge to reduce ‘linen miles’ and innovative EkoChef range of clothing made from recycled plastic bottles and waste polyester fibres.

Debbie Rosher from The Caterers Linen Supply said “We heard about the competition at an ACE event, and thought we should enter, having built our new factory 3 years ago. But we never thought we'd win! We use 70% less water than a standard laundry, and the staff are all on board with our sustainable initiatives. We'll keep going and continue to look for new innovations.”

The award was presented by Mark Jankovic, CEO of Delphis Eco who said “We were looking for genuine game-changing behaviour – all too often, sustainability is looked after by a group of people with no authority, and no budget. We were impressed by the commitment shown by the company, demonstrated by the fact that the MD heads the Sustainability Panel.”

In second place were Bartlett Mitchell for their initiatives including Free Wheeling Wednesdays, a drive to reduce deliveries and food miles, and their DARE healthy eating programme. Third place went to The Clink Restaurant at HMP Highdown in recognition of their specialised skills training to reduce re-offending rates. Training in bee-keeping, horticulture and catering are offered, and there is a robust recycling programme.

Gram UK, Lexington Catering, Unilever, Vacherin and Sodexo were all commended.

People winner

The people award went to Caroline Meledo, Corporate Citizenship and Engagement Advisor at Sodexo. In Summer 2011, Sodexo launched a ‘Green Spark’ initiative, inviting their teams to submit innovative green ideas, which could improve the company's environmental performance. Caroline developed her Coffee Grounds for Growth concept into a successful social enterprise, embracing waste management, recycling and community benefit in partnership with the team at HMP Peterborough. Used coffee grounds are re-packaged into their original bags and offered as free compost to employees. The packages are displayed in boxes made by prisoners within the carpentry workshops.

Steve Jones, Reducing Re-offending Advisor for Sodexo Justice Services said “We've been running an initiative to reduce landfill for a few years, but it was costing us more money to run than the initiative was saving. Operating out of the prison workshop makes sense, and it gives the prisoners something constructive and genuinely useful to create. All Sodexo sites are now taking part in the initiative, and we have a map of the UK on the wall of the workshop, showing how far their work has travelled.”

In second place was Emma Finch, Catering Manager at Asmec for Bartlett Mitchell. She introduced an innovative idea that both recycled and saved costs, using the coffee clutches to collect loyalty point stamps. Team Investec at Lusso Catering came third, with their Ugly Fish Friday campaign designed to raise awareness of the issues faced by the UK's fishing industry and encourage people to try such fish as dab, gurnard and whiting.

Gerard Jacob at Vacherin, Rebecca Forsythe at BaxterStorey, Conall Hogan at Bartlett Mitchell (OFGEM) and the Bartlett Mitchell Marketing Team working with Stuart Cawley & the catering team at Unison were all commended.

The panel of expert judges included Jason Monkton, Sustainability Manager for 3663; Brendan Hunter, Hospitality Manager, WRAP; Mark Lineham, Managing Director, Sustainable Restaurant Association; Mark Jankovich, Chief Executive, Delphis Eco.

The winners will enjoy a 3 night stay at award winning, luxury eco hotel The Scarlet in Cornwall, (including a trip to the Eden Project and a wild food lunch with Caroline Davey of Fat Hen), and a foraging experience with ‘Wild Man Wild Food’ Fergus Drennan.

ACE are urging companies to consider their entries for next year. Jeni Edwards, organiser of the event and ACE's new chair said “We were overwhelmed by the quality and number of entries we received and the standard is now set for an even bigger and more exciting competition next year. There are a lot of fantastic sustainable initiatives out there in the catering industry, and we want to celebrate that. It will be interesting to see how businesses and people rise to the challenge now and continue to come up with new and innovative ways to implement change and make a difference.”

– Ends –

The next ACE event is the annual ACE Ready Steady Cook Competition on 26th September. Full details available on the ACE website acegb.org

For more information please contact:

Jane Brocklebank
jane@janebrocklebank.co.uk
01628 675584
07968 323177

Sponsored by:
  • Unilever Food Solutions - PG Tips
  • Qcumber
  • Nestlé
  • Bibendum
  • Vivreau Advanced Water Systems
  • Delphis Eco
  • 3663
  • RSA Food Service International
  • Meiko
  • Gram
  • BPM (British Premium Meats)
  • Direct Seafoods
  • Belvoir Fruit Farms
  • Gelupo
  • Flour Power
  • Space Catering
  • Reynolds
  • Tri Star
  • Original Bean Company
  • Angel HR
About the Association of Catering Excellence (ACE)

ACE is a networking forum which runs innovative and stimulating networking events to provide relationship building opportunities for professionals in the catering industry. Further information is available on the ACE Website – www.acegb.org

Download this press release as a PDF

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Press Release

Sodexo Prestige are victorious at ACE's annual Quiz Night

18th March 2013

The team from Sodexo Prestige were the proud winners of the 8th annual ACE Quiz Night on Wednesday 13th March at Imperial College, London. Beating Lexington into second place by just 2 points, the Sodexo Prestige team were delighted to collect their prize from quiz organiser Sheila Mitchell MBE and ACE Chairman Ruston Toms.

Sodexo Prestige

Operational Development Manager, Alexandra Kristall commented: “This is the third time we've entered. We're generally middle or bottom of the leader board but we all had different strengths and that proved to be our winning formula this time! Our best round was European Royalty and the autographs, our worst round was the pictures of the herbs. Not good for a catering company. The event was the best it's been so far, and it's great to see it so well supported. We'll be back next year to defend our title!”

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In third place were The Consultants, headed up by Chris Stern, who were narrowly beaten by just 1 point – a close finish by any standards!

There were 38 teams and 228 individuals taking part, representing many companies, large and small working in all sectors of the catering industry.

Lexington with Ruston Toms

A trip down memory lane was provided at half time, as teams had to correctly identify the retro sweets in a bowl, with all-time favourites such as Pontefract Cakes, White Chocolate Mice, Pear Drops and Peanut Sweets.

The evening was sponsored by United Coffee, and 3663 provided the raffle prizes. Proceeds from the raffle which amounted to £750 went to the Academy of Culinary Arts ‘Chefs Adopt a School’.

Trading Director, Alastair Anderson said “We've been a keen and active supporter of the ACE organisation for as long as I can remember! The ACE events are well attended by the great and the good from UK's most successful catering businesses and it's a great way of showing off the latest coffee innovation and new product development. It's also a great opportunity to network and interact and above all, see a few old friends!”

The Consultants with Ruston Toms

The next ACE event is the ACE Sustains Award on 17th July at The Crystal, Royal Victoria Docks, London E16 1GB.

More details available on the ACE website acegb.org/ace_sustains

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Sponsors included:
  • United Coffee
  • 3663
  • Walkers
  • Berkeley Scott
Teams entered included:
  • 3663
  • ABDA/Electrolux
  • Acquire Services
  • Admiral
  • Artizian
  • Bartlett Mitchell
  • BaxterStorey
  • Berkeley Scott
  • Blue Apple
  • Bright Hygiene
  • Holroyd Howe Independent
  • British Premium Meats
  • Caterers Linen Supply
  • CH & Co
  • Collins King
  • Elior
  • Evolve Hospitality
  • Gram UK
  • Indicater
  • Lexington
  • Networking Hygiene
  • Off to Work
  • Peros
  • Pritchitts
  • Restaurant Associates
  • Sodexo Prestige
  • Stern Consultants
  • The Brookwood Partnership
  • Troika Recruitment
  • United Coffee
  • Vacherin
  • West Horsley Dairy
About Chefs Adopt A School

Chefs Adopt a School is a national charity which sends chefs into schools to deliver food education to children from where food comes from and how it is grown, through to how to cook it. The programme covers taste, healthy eating, nutrition and hygiene as well as the recently added Front of House session.

“There is a real need to re-connect children with their food and Chefs Adopt a School is the model that should be used across the country.” — His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales, 2nd February 2010, at the CAAS 20th Anniversary celebration.

“Chefs Adopt a School is so important, without it, the next generation will really suffer.” — Heston Blumenthal OBE, Chef Patron, The Fat Duck and member of the Academy of Culinary Arts

chefsadoptaschool.org.uk

ACE Quiz Night 2013 Scores

For a full table of scores for the Quiz Night, please download this press release as a PDF

About the Association of Catering Excellence (ACE)

ACE is a networking forum which runs innovative and stimulating networking events to provide relationship building opportunities for professionals in the catering industry. Further information is available on the ACE Website – www.acegb.org

Download this press release as a PDF

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Hospitality Guild 2012 Apprenticeship Awards
Hospitality Guild Launches Apprenticeship Awards

The Hospitality Guild, in partnership with our industry's sector skills council, People 1st, has launched the opening of nominations for its inaugural Apprenticeship Awards 2012. These awards promote the hospitality industry throughout England as a great place to work and recognise the value apprenticeships offer.

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The Apprenticeship Awards will provide the hospitality industry with an opportunity to recognise outstanding apprentices and celebrate their achievements, while at the same time acknowledging the fantastic work of employers and providers in promoting and delivering apprenticeships.

Nominations are open to businesses and individuals throughout England for the following awards categories:

  • Intermediate Apprentice of the Year
  • Advanced Apprentice of the Year
  • Apprenticeship Mentor of the Year
  • Employer of the Year: SME (less than 250 employees)
  • Employer of the Year: Large (more than 250 employees)
  • Partnership of the Year

There are some great prizes on offer for young professionals in our sector including iPads, fantastic career development opportunities at top hospitality venues and, of course, industry recognition.

More information about the Hospitality Guild Apprenticeship Awards 2012 and nomination forms can be found at www.hospitalityguild.co.uk/awards

Nominations close on Friday 12 October 2012.

An event will be held in December to announce the Hospitality Guild Apprenticeship Award winners. At the same time, the Hospitality Guild will also showcase existing major awards from the Guild's partner organisations that recognise the achievements of young professionals in hospitality. The recent winners of these awards will be inducted into the first-ever Hospitality Guild ‘Young Hall of Fame’.

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How do I join the ACE?

Either fill in the application form on the ‘Become a Member’ page, or contact our Administration Office at Bourne House, and they will send you the appropriate application form. This will then be processed, and you will receive confirmation of your membership within a few days.

What events do ACE organise?

Our voluntary council members with the support of our fantastic sponsors work hard to organise four fun events. the ACE Quiz Night, the ACE Summer Event, ‘Ready Steady Cook’ and the Wine Tasting Dinner. All of the events usually take place in central London at stunning venues.

How can I get involved in the Council?

Help is always welcome on the committee, either for one off events or as a regular member – simply speak to one of the existing committee members whose details are on the ‘Council Members & Patrons’ page and they will be able to tell how you can get involved.

Why Join ACE?

  • ACE is a great opportunity to meet people and create closer links from all sectors of the industry.
  • We raise the profile and create an awareness of the opportunities and high standards of excellence in the Food & Service Management Sector.
  • New products are often showcased at most of our events.

Contact ACE

ACE - Association of Catering Excellence

Bourne House

Horsell Park

Woking

Surrey

GU21 4LY

WorkTel: 01483 765111

FaxFax: 01483 751991

Email:

Web: acegb.org