Page 6 - Essentially Catering Issue 82
P. 6

Essentially Catering Magazine - October 2018

        Industry News

        Cost of food                                            Tilda hunts for

        & drink at all                                          next Zest Quest

        time high                                               Asia champion

        Inflation in foodservice prices reached 3.2% in July 2018,
        the new Foodservice Price Index  from CGA and Prestige
        Purchasing reveals - extending an upward trend that has
        seen prices of many food and drink items hit record highs.
          The figure of 3.2% is more than six times higher than
        levels measured earlier in 2018. Volatility in currency
        exchange rates, labour shortages and challenging weather
        conditions in the UK and EU have all contributed to the
        steep movement.
          The Foodservice Price Index reveals the early impacts of
        one of the longest dry and hot spells in the UK since 1976,
        which has led to lower yields and smaller sizes of fruit and
        vegetables. Disruption to planting caused by extremely
        cold winter conditions and heavy spring rains exacerbated
        the problems, and prices of items including lettuces, salad
        leaves, brassicas and potatoes have all risen following   The search for the next Zest Quest Asia champion
        poor yields.                                            is on, with Tilda Foodservice joining Cyrus Todiwala
                                                                in the drive to encourage colleges to enter the 2019
                                                                  Launched to inspire catering students across the UK
                                                                to consider Asian cookery as a future career, Zest Quest
                                                                Asia recognises outstanding talent, knowledge and
                                                                understanding of the cuisine. Tilda Foodservice, a gold
                                                                sponsor of the competition, is urging colleges to enter
                                                                before the 26 October 2018 deadline.
                                                                  Along with a star prize of a culinary trip to an Asian
                                                                capital, Tilda’s ‘Best Use of Rice’ category offers an all-
                                                                expenses paid package to London. The trip will include
                                                                a visit to Tilda’s rice mill, an overnight stay at the new
                                                                Hilton Curio in Canary Wharf, as well as a 5-course
          Grain has also felt the heat this summer, with global   dinner at either Mr Todiwala’s Kitchen - the hotel’s
        producers facing a drought that has seriously curbed output.   signature restaurant - or Café Spice Namaste - the
        After several years of strong harvests, EU countries, Russia,   Todiwalas’ landmark East London restaurant.
        Australia and Argentina have all experienced heatwave     Cyrus and Pervin Todiwala founded Zest Quest Asia
        conditions, leading the International Grains Council to cut its   in collaboration with the Master Chefs of Great Britain
        global production forecast to a five-year low.          to inspire students across the UK to consider Asian
          Inflation in the Oils and Fats category of the Index is also   cookery as a future career. In so doing, the competition
        steep. Having increased every month in 2018 so far, prices   aims to help stem the skills shortage in Asian cuisine
        here reached a new record high in July.                 threatening the £4 billion Asian food industry, as well
          In sharp contrast, sugar prices have continued to fall,   as encourage educationists to include classical Asian
        and recorded a record low in July. Messages about healthier   cookery in the curriculum.
        eating and the Government’s sugar tax, combined with      For further information, visit
        a continued push in global production, have resulted in a
        sustained decline in prices.

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