After working with the catering teams in a number of hospitals for my series Operation Hospital Food, I began to realise that although no two hospitals – or the challenges they face - are the same, there is still a core set of factors which most will typically have in common.
For example, whether they operate a cook-serve or a cook-chill system, most if not all hospitals still have a small on-site kitchen, which may not have been utilised to its maximum effect.
I’ve also found that despite hospitals’ huge buying power, they don’t always buy locally – or even British – because of misunderstanding of the NHS procurement network.
I soon realised achieving my vision of giving patients the best possible food while in hospital would outstrip my lifetime, if I went into hospitals one by one.
So while working out my plans for the third series of Operation Hospital Food, I started thinking of how I could get the ideas and recipes that I’ve proved will work into as many NHS trusts as possible - and that’s where the idea for this website was born.
I’ve tried to document here everything I've learned over the years I've been working with hospital catering teams.
I understand that not all sections will apply to every single hospital, but if every catering manager could apply a few, I firmly believe they would make a radical difference to their food and indeed whole business – and most important of all, improve the experience of patients.