- Mark Taylor FIH
'2022 Draws to a Close but here comes the EXCITEMENT of 2023'
Following the challenges of 2021, 2022 can be described as a ‘full-on’ year and therefore it’s time for me to reflect on the past 12 months of bloom foodservice.
I can honestly say, working alongside my awesome clients; my wonderful and insightful industry friends & colleagues, I’ve had an absolute blast!
Having such a diverse client base, operating in many varied sectors, means I have been able to reconnect with customers’ who I haven’t seen since starting bloom foodservice and venturing into new and exciting channels and meeting new customers. For those of you who know me well, one of my commonly used phrases is ‘every day’s a learning day’ and that couldn’t be truer during 2022. My knowledge and understanding of plant-based and vegan food; small family-owned start-up businesses; helping to develop new channels for both large and small companies and my first foray into the world of Michelin-starred operations.
The Hospitality sector once again, has taken the brunt of the economic challenges with the current energy crisis; the effect of rising costs, mainly due to the war in Ukraine; the overall staffing crisis and over the last few weeks, the continued industrial action by many public sector employees which has a direct impact on the sector, particularly with regards to the travel infrastructure. It’s so disheartening to hear of the sheer number of cancellations restaurants have faced, due to their customers’ not being able to get to them or get home – just as we all thought this was going to the Christmas we haven’t had for a few years. If nothing else, this sector and the people who work in it are resilient!
During the latter part of 2022, I was delighted to have been selected to take on the role of Co-Vice Chair of the Institute of Hospitality’s new Southeast Region. Working with some amazing and inspirational hospitality professionals, we want to offer inclusivity; collaborative working and incredible networking opportunities across ALL sectors of the industry, whilst raising funds for charitable causes and the Institute of Hospitality’s important bursary fund.
Alongside the Institute of Hospitality, I remain the Regional Chair of the National Association of Care Catering (NACC) for another year, something I passionately believe in. Working to ensure that residents in the care sector, no matter how old they are, receive dignity in dining and we eradicate poor quality food in this important sector. Over the past years, the NACC has fearlessly campaigned for more overall funding and the prevention of local government cuts to the meals on wheels services, which provide ‘more than just a meal’ and they are even more important given the situation within the NHS now.
2023 will be another challenging year for hospitality, but there must be light on the horizon or at least hope of that light. The hospitality sector remains one of the most exciting; vibrant and innovative sectors, with amazing people who work across so many different operations. I consider myself very lucky to be working in these sectors, whether it’s talking to pub operators; hospital and social care caterers; school caterers; distributors and wholesalers; travel operators or luxury hotels.
Thank you to everyone who bloom foodservice has worked with this past year and those who continue to believe in what we can achieve together in 2023! It really is very much appreciated and here’s to another excellent year of results; sales and enjoyment in what we do, in a sector we all love.
A very Happy New Year to you all.