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East Anglia Branch News

From Stewart Nimmo

We’ve got two Branch meetings to report on this issue. Members of the Branch met at Colchester Hospital on Wednesday 26 September 2018 to tour the hospital kitchen and production areas. Hosted by Fiona Sparrow, Facilities Manager, and Nancy James, Catering Manager, Members were warmly welcomed to the hospital with a cup of coffee and friendly smile.

The Branch meeting was opened by Kevin Cowley, Branch Chairman, who addressed the 14 Members who had travelled from across East Anglia to attend the meeting. Kevin was pleased to report that following our RFW workshop in May and Newmarket Nights event in August, the Branch has seen a rise in membership. It was noted that attendance at this meeting had been impacted by the BDA conference that was being held in London the next day.

East Anglia MembersOnce introductions were completed, Nancy allocated us into groups of four ready to tour the area, meaning minimum disruption to the ongoing service. Following the insightful tour, we gathered in the lecture theatre where Fiona delivered her presentation on Colchester’s meal ordering and meal service systems. Members also heard about the local meal planning cycles and were briefed about the PLACE audits that occur annually. This was followed by a Q & A session, which promoted much discussion on a number of topics.

The final presentation of the morning came from Victoria Ruggles, McCain’s Regional Account Executive, who discussed McCain’s involvement in supplying nutritional potato-based products to hospitals across the UK and the benefits of home comforts in hospital to assist patient health and recovery.

At midday, delegates enjoyed a delicious lunch supplied by Anglia Crown and a sample of oven-coated chips supplied by McCain. After lunch, it was back to business with discussions about the new IDDSI descriptors and plans for our proposed workshop which was held in January.

Kevin closed the meeting by thanking Fiona, Nancy and their team for hosting the day’s events, Victoria Ruggles for McCain’s presentation and all the HCA Members for attending and supporting the event.

On Wednesday 26 November Members met at Addenbrookes Hospital to tour the hospital’s kitchen and production areas. Hosted by Jeanette Gee, Medirest Patients Catering Manager, Addenbrookes Hospital, Members were warmly welcomed to the hospital by James Varghese, Catering Consultant, apetito, with an introduction and invite to try the new IDDSI food.

Once we had finished hearing James’ informative talk and tried all the new Dysphagia food, it was off to the lecture theatre for tea, coffee and biscuits, where Kevin Cowley, Branch Chairman, addressed the 32 Members attending the meeting and thanked Jeanette Gee for organising the venue at Addenbrookes at such short notice.

Once introductions were completed Kevin asked all Members to vote for the new HCA East Anglian Branch committee. The new committee members are as follows:

  • Chairman: Barry Wells
  • Vice Chairman: Herman Van Den Berg
  • Secretary: Samantha Girling
  • Treasurer: Kevin Cowley
  • Council Representative: Stewart Nimmo.

Following the election of the new committee, the AGM got underway covering the Financial forecast for 2019, The National Forum to be hosted in Wales in April, calendar dates for the year and areas that will help raise the profile of the East Anglian Branch. The AGM closed at 11:39am with a big thank you to all those who attended.

The first presentation of the morning came from Danny Silcock, Brakes Sector Development Chef. Danny gave a live interactive presentation on the new IDDSI food and gave a brief overview of the new regulations due to be published in April. Danny also showcased a new starch product used to achieve various texturised nutritious meals, and made a liquidised salad and chocolate orange mouse for Members to try, both of which were highly delicious.

The final presentation of the day was given by Toby from FoodBuy, who gave a brief presentation on the new NHSBSA (New Buying Standards). FoodBuy were awarded the new Towerlo service on 1 July 2018 and it is FoodBuy’s role to help the NHS save money by buying in bulk.

At midday delegates enjoyed a delicious lunch supplied by apetito and chatted amongst themselves. Kevin closed the meeting by wishing all Members a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.

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