Blog & Current news


Office catering Birmingham Blog, with information for all your catering needs from Trenchers, including information on sustainability, allergens, portions, hygiene inspections.

31Jul

Challenges involved in being a caterer in Birmingham from the prospective of the Trenchers Catering Manager.

The challenges of being a caterer:

Time:

It’s the age old problem, as with many businesses, Time is always on your back, knowing that food has to be made and delivered before 12pm every day, may seem like no problem at all from the outside observer,

However, with a small team, we generally cater for around 200 people every day, all working as hard as they can, and trying to give the very best standards possible,

That 12pm delivery time, has to be always in our minds, for delivery around that time, the drivers are all out on their delivery runs for 10am, this may seem early, but when you consider we cover the whole of Birmingham, the second biggest city in the country, and can be dragged in all directions for a sale, being early is always better than being late.

Production on the lunches will start at 3am, with deliveries for breakfast being made and delivered through the morning and our deadline looming always, it takes careful planning and execution to make this business work.

To cap it all off, there is a monster amount of paper work involved, from invoices, labels, delivery sheets, to temperature records and budgets, all crammed into a day that generally ends when the delivery drivers return from their respective runs, 1:30pm.

Patients:

When training staff, patients is always the key to getting the staff member ready and able to help achieve the needs of the business, all employees are different, and will take differing amounts of time to learn new skills involve in the catering business.  What takes one person a day to learn may take the person standing next to them three weeks to get it write.

Problem solving and initiative

At Trenchers we like solving our customers problems, be it a call at 11:30am needed a lunch delivered for 12pm, or a bespoke menu just for that customer, due to their special requirements.   With over 15 years’ experience you can rely on us to always delver a great service.

www.trenchers-midlands.co.uk

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19Jul

Trenchers sustainability policy produced by our Trenchers catering manager in Birmingham.

Sustainability policy:

Sustainable Catering Policy 2017 to 2020 Trenchers catering commits to providing a high quality catering and hospitality service. We recognise that the procurement, preparation and serving of food and drink at our branch in Castle Vale, has an impact on the environment.

 To minimise the impact that our activities have on the environment we will embed sound ethical, social and environmental practices both when procuring goods and services required for the delivery of hospitality across all of our customer sites, and when preparing and serving food and drink to our customers.

Trenchers catering seeks to provide a healthy, nutritious, culturally diverse and sustainable menu choice for our customers.

We are committed to provide fresh home cooked food and will change dishes to use the best products that the season has to offer.

We commit to operate a, Sustainability Strategy and Procurement Policy Trenchers  Catering Department will:

· Improve access to, and promote, healthy and sustainable foods o Improve the availability, and promotion, of affordable, healthy and sustainable food

o Prepare seasonal menus and increase the use of seasonal food to minimise the energy used in food production, transport and storage

o Improve animal welfare within our supply chain through the use of appropriate assurance schemes o Exclude fish species identified on the Marine Stewardship Council’s ‘fish to avoid’ list, maximise the use of fish on the MCS fish-to-eat list, and continue to serve only MSC certified fish o Actively engage with both staff and customers about their relevant environmental and social considerations of their purchases

· Ensure that sustainability is embedded within the procurement process

o Conduct purchasing audits of goods and services in order to increase and maintain usage of sustainable products, identify good practice and areas for improvement

o Ensure that sustainability specifications are included in future catering contracts and that sustainability criteria are used in awarding of the contract

o Work with suppliers to minimise negative environmental and social effects associated with the products and services that they provide o Provide guidance and relevant product information to staff to allow them to select sustainable products and services

· Use all resources, including water and energy, as efficiently as possible and reduce waste from catering processes and services

o Promote a culture of rethink, reduce, reuse and recycle

o Reduce food waste and packaging waste associated with catering and increase recycling and composting

o Monitor our utility consumption and implement actions, to reduce our carbon emissions

· Set and communicate clear quantifiable objectives and targets and ensure those targets are met and continual improvement is made

o Develop clear objectives and detailed targets to minimise the environmental and social effects associated with the products and services we purchase

o Review this Sustainable Catering Policy annually, assess whether the targets have been reached and if therefore they can be raised to ensure continual improvement and communicate this to customers

o Build responsibility for the management of this policy into the objectives of all catering staff, The Catering Department has daily responsibility for the refinement of this Policy and for the strategic implementation of the Action Plan

Robert Kincaid

UK Director  19/7/2017

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17Jul

Health benefits of cheese from the great food blog of Jenreviews.

At Trenchers we are always looking for interesting blogs about the products that we use, and we have been contacted by Jen Reviews at https://www.jenreviews.com/cheese/ who had a great blog detailing the “15 health benefits of cheese according to science”

Taken from Jen Reviews:

2. Cheese Can Have a Positive Effect on Your Dental Health

A study done by dental professionals showed that eating cheese might help to prevent dental cavities. Four groups were tested, consuming milk, sugar-free yogurt, paraffin, and cheese, and the pH balance in various areas of their mouths were tested before and after consumption. A pH level lower than 5.5 can leave your teeth at risk for erosion due to acids created in your mouth. While the groups who drank milk, and ate paraffin and sugar-free yogurt showed no significant change, the group who ate cheese experienced an increase in pH levels (5).

The findings may be the result of increased saliva production, due to chewing, which protects teeth from erosion. It could also be that certain components of the cheese adhered to the teeth, protecting them from acid. Either way, your teeth are made up of the same substances as your bones. Just as cheese is beneficial for your bone health, it can also have positive effects on your dental health.

Bottom Line: Cheese can keep your teeth strong and prevent expensive dental work that results from decay.

Bocadillo,originating from Spain and Latin America, this is Spanish style bread,cut horizontally lengthways and traditionally seen as humble food.? Bocadillos are often eaten in cafes and tapas bars.

Bruschetta ? some will say that bruschetta are not sandwiches at all.? These are open sandwiches originating from Italy, often consisting of grilled bread rubbed with garlic and olive oil.? They are versatile as you can top them with just about anything and are often seen in this country as an appetiser.

Croque-Monsieur originate from France.? They are a grilled ham & cheese sandwich and were probably first seen in the early 1900s.? My first experience of a croquet-monsieur was in Calais in around 1982.

Doner Kebab are Turkish in origin and are now a mainstay of the end of a boozy night out in this country!? Meat is cooked on a spit (traditionally veal or beef mixed with lamb and spices) and wrapped either in flatbread or pitta.

Is a Hot Dog a sandwich at all?? It makes our list none-the-less.? Many associate the hot dog with New York when German immigrants introduced their frankfurter sausages in the early 1900s.? Cooked sausage is served in a sliced bun with garnish.? Do you have yours with ketchup or mustard or both?

Paninis are now seen all over the country and are a grilled ciabatta.? Traditionally filled with deli style ingredients they are a really popular choice in the UK.

Hamburgers have become one of the most popular foods in the world.? A cooked meat patty is placed inside a sliced hamburger bun and these are another Americanised import from Germany. Watch any food programme on those odd food channels and you?ll see some of the strangest combinations, enough to make your stomach turn!

Melts were introduced probably from the US and are simply a toasted sandwich ? but not done in a Breville!? Sometimes melts are grilled or fried (yuck!) and the most popular melt of all combines tuna with either Gruyere of Emmental cheese.

Souvlaki is a favourite from Greece. Pieces of grilled meat on a skewer are served in pitta bread with garnishes. Were going to be having some of these on holiday in Crete during August  looking forward to it!

Submarines (or more commonly subs) are simply a long roll of Italian or French style bread with various fillings. Named from their shape, a mix of Italian and American cuisine, they are one of the most popular lunchtime options in the Western world today.

What do you think about our list?? There’s probably 30 or 40 other options, but what?s your favourite?? Tell us on Twitter.

We have some great cheese fillings included in our lunches at Trenchers, try ordering the classic sandwich platter, which will have cheddar and brie options included in the fillings. trenchers-midlands.co.uk/office-catering-menu 

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30May

Trenchers terms and Condition for our catering customers in Birmingham.

Terms and Conditions - updated 24/4/18

Orders must be placed by 4pm the day before delivery. Cancellations can only be accepted if made by 5pm the day before delivery Deliveries will be made between 10:00am and 12:30pm unless previously agreed Occasionally due to seasonal variation or availability we may have to substitute certain items with items of a similar or higher value Payment terms are strictly 14 days Late payments will be subject to collection fees and interest as prescribed by the Late Payment of Commercial Debts Act 2002


In these Terms and Conditions “Trenchers Catering” means Kincaid 1875 Limited t/a Trenchers and “the Client” means the person or company booking the event.

Quotations

Written quotations are valid for 3 months from the date of quotation and may be subject to change following a site visit or further information gathering. All prices are subject to VAT at the prevailing rate. All quotations contain fixed costs which will not be reduced if the final number of guests is less than originally quoted for.

Confirmation

email confirmation of any event will be taken as acceptance of  Terms and Conditions.

Menu Prices and Numbers

Menu prices quoted by Trenchers are prepared on the basis of specific numbers of guests; and are subject to a minimum of 5 guests. All prices are based on costs prevailing at the time of the quotation and are conditional upon market availability. Prices are subject to variation in the event of changes to numbers of guests.

Confirmation of final numbers must be given not later than 3pm on the  working day prior to the event, after which time any decrease in numbers cannot be accepted and the full charge will be made. Trenchers will notify the Client promptly of any price changes or variations to the quotation.

Final Numbers

Invoices are based on the final numbers confirmed not later than 3pm on the working day before the function, or on the numbers actually catered for, should this be higher. Should the numbers decrease after 3pm the previous day, original figure will be charged for. Should the numbers rise during this time, we reserve the right to charge a re- booking charge.

Deposit

No Deposite is needed on booking as all bookings are on an invoice basis, with our standard 14 day terms.

Cancellation

If booking is cancelled before 3pm the day before, no charge will be made, however, if the lunch is cancelled on the day of the booking, full invoice amount will be charged.

 

Final Invoice

The final invoice will be sent the morning of the catering, and is payable within 14 days of the date of issue. Payment may be made by sterling ,cheque or direct bank account transfer, or the worldpay link which can be found on the pdf invoice, Kincaid 1875 Limited reserves the right to charge interest at 8% above base rate per annum or the monthly equivalent on all outstanding balances.

Cheques to be made out to Kincaid 1875 Limited t/a Trenchers or Trenchers.

Loss or Damage

Except in the case of the negligent or wilful conduct of Kincaid 1875 Limited, its employees or agents, Kincaid 1875 Limited accepts no liability for any loss caused by Kincaid 1875 failure to perform its obligations. The Client is responsible for any loss or damage to hired equipment, from the time of delivery until collection by Kincaid 1875 Limited, or its sub contractor, or returned by the Client. Any losses or breakages will be charged to the Client at full replacement cost. The Client should, in his own interest, ensure that all such equipment is insured.

Complaints

Any complaint shall be made promptly and in any event must be received at ncaid 1875 Limited Catering’s address in writing not more than 7 days from the date of the event concerned.

Delivery

Any time or date stated by the Company for the delivery or removal of goods required in the provision of services is an estimate only and shall not be an essential term of the contract. Delivery and collection will be attempted to all reasonable areas at the venue or facility. However should the access be restricted or additional time, personnel or facilities required, any additional costs will b passed on to the client.

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30May

Allergen Information from Trenchers catering in Birmingham.

Trenchers Catering UK is able to offer advice to clients in full compliance with the legislation introduced by the EU on 13th December 2014 (EU FIC).

The legislation is good news for consumers as information about allergens will be made clearer and offered in a more consistent way, enabling clients to make safer food choices.

Clients (or those booking on behalf of clients) should make us aware of dietary requirements, in advance, so that we can provide specific advice, when required.? This includes severe intolerances or allergies.? As a buffet catering business, there is no requirement under the legislation for us to individually label foods, but we will provide general advice about the products we use, at the point of supply.? It remains clients? responsibility to pass this information on to consumers (people who actually eat our food).

In the legislation, there are fourteen major allergens identified:

AllergenBrief descriptionWill our food contain this item
CeleryStalks, leaves and seeds and the root called celeriac.We no longer use the raw salad item and it is not an ingredient in any product.
Cereals containing glutenFound in foods containing flour.All of our bread and cakes contain gluten.? If you have a gluten allergy, please tell us and we will supply gluten free products.
CrustaceansCrab, lobster, prawn and scampi.Please tell us if you have an allergy to this group, so that we can exclude these items from your buffet.
EggsFound in cakes, mayonnaise, sauces and pastries.Please tell us if you have an allergy to this group, so that we can exclude these items from your buffet.
FishFish can be in sauces, relishes, dressings and pastes.Please tell us if you have an allergy to this group, so that we can exclude these items from your buffet.
LupinCan be used in some types of bread and pastries.Please tell us if you have an allergy to this group, so that we can exclude these items from your buffet.
MilkA common ingredient in butter, cheese, cream and yoghurt.Please tell us if you have an allergy to this group, so that we can exclude these items from your buffet.
MolluscsIncludes mussels, land snails, squid and whelks.We do not use this food group.
MustardLiquid mustard, mustard powder and mustard seeds.Please tell us if you have an allergy to this group, so that we can exclude these items from your buffet.
NutsNuts grown on trees.We can exclude this item from your food, but we DO NOT OPERATE IN A NUT FREE ENVIRONMENT.
PeanutsKnown as groundnuts often used as an ingredient.We can exclude this item from your food, but we DO NOT OPERATE IN A PEANUT FREE ENVIRONMENT.
Sesame seedsOften found in bread, houmous and oils.Please tell us if you have an allergy to this group, so that we can exclude these items from your buffet.
SoyaOften found in bean curd and is a staple ingredient in oriental food.We do not use this food group.
Sulphur dioxide (sulphites)Often used in dried raisins, apricots and prunes (and other items).? If you have asthma, you have a higher risk of developing a reaction to sulphur dioxide.Please tell us if you have an allergy to this group, so that we can exclude these items from your buffet.

 

If you have any doubts about your specific situation then there are two things to remember: first, ask us for advice.? Secondly, if your allergy is severe, if in doubt, do not consume our food.

If you are allergic to a food that is not on the regulatory list, it may not be included on the allergen information we give.? If in doubt, speak to us first.

Further information is available from us or from the Food Standards Agency (food.gov.uk).

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30May

Always wash salads, provided by PHE and Trenchers Catering Birmingham find this helpful.

BBC News is reporting that people are falling ill with E-Coli, due to uncleaned mixed leaves you can buy from the supermarket. At Trenchers Catering we do use bagged mixed leaves, however as is good practice with food hygiene, we wash our salads before use regardless of what is said on the packaging, and would advise everyone to do the same.

Please see the below  news article taken from The BBC New website:

Shoppers are being reminded to thoroughly wash mixed salad leaves amid concern that this food could be the source of an E. coli outbreak that has killed two and infected more than 150 people in the UK.

Public Health England says it is still working to establish the exact cause.

Many of those struck down by the E. coli O157 bug had eaten pre-packed salad, including rocket leaves.

The infection can cause bloody diarrhoea and abdominal pain.

People usually notice symptoms three to four days after they have been infected, but symptoms can start any time between one and 14 days afterwards and last for up to two weeks.

Some people will have no symptoms, but others can develop serious complications and will need medical help.

Public Health England says the strain involved is likely to be imported, possibly from the Mediterranean area.

To date, it has been informed of 151 cases – 144 people in England, six in Wales and one in Scotland.

Of these, 62 needed hospital care and two patients died.

Most of the cases of the outbreak in England were clustered in the South West.

Dr Isobel Oliver from PHE, said: “All food sample results to date have been negative for E. coli O157 – but it’s important to be aware that where food has been contaminated with E. coli O157, it is not always possible to identify the bacteria on food testing.

“As an additional precautionary measure, we have advised a small number of wholesalers to cease adding some imported rocket leaves to their mixed salad products pending further investigations.”

People can help protect themselves from possible infection by washing their hands before eating and handling food and by thoroughly washing vegetables and salads that they are preparing to eat (unless they have been pre-prepared and are specifically labelled “ready to eat”).

E. coli O157 is found in the gut and faeces of many animals, particularly cattle, and can contaminate food and water.

Outbreaks of O157 are rare compared with other food-borne diseases. UK.

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