Taming the beast at the HTA Catering Conference

by | Jun 11, 2016 | News | 0 comments

Catering is a beast. The customer is king. It?s all about cake, coffee and hot food. Is it a trend or fad? Coffee is a culture. Casual diners still expect excellent service. Local is a given nowadays.

These were the sounds of the HTA Catering Conference, sponsored by Vision Commercial Kitchens, that took place this week on 7 and 8 June at The Belfry Hotel and Resort, near Sutton Coldfield.

Catering is an unusual, exciting, fast-paced beast that operations managers need to get behind if they want to move forward. This was the call to action by Pippa McKean, Director, McKean Consulting, who opened the conference and reminded delegates that we?re now very much a hospitality industry as well.

Over the two day event delegates heard tips, advice and case studies that they could apply to their own businesses?

Build a team of naturally positive people who smile and good service will follow. Top tips from Fred Sirieix, General Manager, Galvin at Windows, who treats service like a religion, included: be charming first, greet your customers with five smiles, give service with a magic touch, say thank you, and have two staff briefings a day.

Financial issues are trending in catering, but there are several ways to combat this by making cost efficiencies; the design and flow of your kitchen is a good place to start.

Aim for fast food naturally said Henry Dimbleby, Co-Founder of Leon Restaurants. Fast food can be good food too, but, it?s all in the detail ? right staff, food cost, offering and consistency.? Make your garden centre a place for the community to gather .

To make a good cup of coffee you need to get the basics right ? a good machine combo and a skilled barista. Don?t waste your milk!

Top ten food service trends were ? grab and go, have three locations (garden centre, airport, workplace), offer wellbeing, serve afternoon tea and all day breakfast, make it personalised, go with the cafe culture, adapt to technology, try global flavours, consider delivery, find a partnership, and follow the trends not the fads.

more latest news ➡

GCA members to compete in Worrall Cup

GCA members to compete in Worrall Cup

Members of the GCA are being invited to put their marketing and community campaigns to the test as part of the organisation’s annual Worrall Cup competition. The Association will be awarding a cup to the garden centre with the best marketing and community...

Westland growing media products added to Westland Live

Westland adds growing media to Westland Live

Westland Horticulture, home to brands such as New Horizon, Boost, Resolva, Peckish, and Kent & Stowe, has announced it has added its growing media category to Westland Live, giving its customers a one-stop shop for its brands and products. Westland Live is an...

British Garden Centres

How big is Christmas for British Garden Centres?

The highly-anticipated Christmas season has arrived early this year for British Garden Centres, as it opened its doors to customers in September to an influx of pent-up shoppers. Following a temperamental and wet summer and a few years of subdued Christmases due to...

Bradford garden centre group wins award

Bradford garden centre group wins community award

The team at a Bradford-based garden centre group is celebrating after winning a regional business award. Yorkshire Garden Centres, owner of Tong, Tingley, Bingley and Otley Garden Centres, won the Community category of the Yorkshire Post Excellence in Business...

Feverfew launched new gardening apparel for women

Meet the supplier: Feverfew Garden Co

Taking the gardening glove market by storm, Feverfew Garden Co is the UK’s first garden wear brand exclusively designed for women, by women. Garden Centre Retail catches up with Rachel Eunson, the driving force behind the brand. As with many recent ventures,...

HSBC economist

Ex HSBC economist to speak at GCA conference 2024

Former HSBC Head of Economics will be helping delegates at the Garden Centre Association’s (GCA) annual conference understand the resurgence of inflation and the challenges that it continues to bring (January 28 until 31, 2024). Mark Berrisford-Smith, who worked...

Primeur Whiskey Barrel

Primeur launches new range of recycled planters

Looking to the 2024 season, garden retailers can step up their sustainability game and enhance their outdoor offer with a brand-new Primeur range of recycled planter designs and colourways. If you are keen to stay ahead of the curve and meet the increasing demand...

Read GCR's latest edition!

Subscribe ToThe Wednesday Word

Subscribe To
The Wednesday Word


Get all the latest news, events & more straight to your inbox every Wednesday.

You have Successfully Subscribed!

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This