Taste test for new hospi­tal food sup­pli­ers

Harefield Gazette - - NEWS -

HILLING­DON Hospi­tal Trust has signed a new con­tract for its pa­tient meal provider with a high-tech twist.

The trust chose apetito af­ter a taste com­pe­ti­tion in June, where 60 staff and pa­tient rep­re­sen­ta­tives tested food from all the short­listed sup­pli­ers.

Hilling­don Health­watch, Age UK and trust gov­er­nors were all in­volved in the ten­der se­lec­tion process.

The new col­lab­o­ra­tion is also a first for the NHS, with the meals pro­vided to be cooked from frozen in­side the trol­leys they are be­ing served in.

From Novem­ber 1, apetito will de­liver frozen meals to Hilling­don Hospi­tal and Mount Ver­non Hospi­tal which will be loaded into high tech trol­leys on in­di­vid­ual pa­tient trays.

The trol­ley will then cook each meal from frozen, be­fore be­ing wheeled on to the wards and served to pa­tients.

The tech­nol­ogy is the first of its kind to be used in NHS hos­pi­tals and is part of an ef­fort to keep meals at the hospi­tal as sus­tain­able as pos­si­ble.

Apetito al­ready pro­vide Hilling- don Coun­cil with Meals on Wheels ser­vices for some el­derly res­i­dents as well as sup­ply­ing food to around 400 hos­pi­tals and as many care homes across the UK.

Anne Byrne, fa­cil­i­ties man­ager for the trust, said: “We were par­tic­u­larly im­pressed with apetito’s range and the taste of their meals, as well as their com­mer­cial of­fer, and be­lieve they can fur­ther en­hance our al­ready well-recog­nised, high-qual­ity pa­tient meal ser­vices at the trust.

She con­tin­ued: “A key part of the ten­der was around sus­tain­abil­ity and re­spect­ing the en­vi­ron­ment, and apetito’s record on sus­tain­abil­ity was a ma­jor fac­tor in their suc- cess in win­ning the con­tract.”

Rose­marie Hoyle, di­vi­sional man­ager at apetito Health­care said: “We’re de­lighted that the Hilling­don Hos­pi­tals NHS Foun­da­tion Trust has cho­sen to work with apetito and we look for­ward to work­ing to­gether to pro­vide pa­tients with qual­ity, nu­tri­tious meals.

She added: “From our col­lab­o­ra­tion with the trol­ley man­u­fac­turer, So­camel, we are able to of­fer an ad­vanced cater­ing sys­tem not seen be­fore in the UK.

“We are ex­tremely proud of this and be­lieve it will help drive the Trust to flag­ship sta­tus within the NHS.”

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