Friday Wrap: A round-up of the week's hospitality news

by Chris Druce, Friday 19th December 2008 13:42

What a year. You can read about it in our review of the year 2008, it’s fair to say there’s been a lot happening with the apparent end for now of the boom times and the looming recession.

It’s been an active year for the Food Standards Agency (FSA), which has been working with operators to improve their healthy workplace offerings, introducing the traffic lights scheme (for the retail sector at least), and controversially, deciding on a six-tier “scores on the doors” scheme.  
 
With the row over the FSA’s six-tier decision still bubbling along nicely, the organisation’s figurehead Dame Deirdre Hutton has announced she’ll be stepping down from her role next year after four years in the job. One suspects her successor will be required to hit the ground running.

Manchester’s no vote for a congestion charge continued to divide opinion but the industry seemed pretty solid on its opposition to the European Parliament, which voted to scrap the UK’s 48-hour week opt out.

As conditions for the licensed trade got ever tougher, new research suggested the phenomenon of the part-time pub is on the increase and half of Folio Hotel’s head office staff were made redundant.

Still, it’s not all doom and gloom with Ed’s Easy Dinner on the expansion trail, pub company Orchid Group rescued from administration and restaurant group Bistrot Pierre set to grow in 2009.

Compass Group announced UK corporate affairs director Mike Stapleton’s departure, Whitbread its appointment of Patrick Dempsey to the board and Ashley Palmer-Watts at the Fat Duck in Bray was named Star of the Year.

The entry deadline for Knorr Scottish Chef of the Year at ScotHot, which carries a £1,500 cash prize, is approaching.

There are still plenty of goodies to win via our advent calendar giveaway, four O2 tickets in the main arena to any concert of your choice plus access to the VIP area courtesy of Nestle Professional (today); a Three-course set lunch for two at London’s Hibiscus with Champagne on arrival with matching wines courtesy of Claude and Claire Bosi (Saturday); a copy of Return to Tuscany and Italian Mama’s Kitchen courtesy of Giancarlo and Katie Caldesi (Sunday). All you have to do is click on the corresponding day’s date on our advent calendar to be in a chance of winning, so what are you waiting for?

With this being the final Friday Wrap of the year all that’s left is for me to wish you a wonderful Christmas and see you all in the New Year.  
 

Editor's Pick 
The UK’s very own Michelin man
Madonna lets Guy Ritchie keep the Punch Bowl
Star of the Year video
Anton Mosimann video interview 
  
 
Quote of the Week 
“It would be a real tragedy if people lost their jobs and their houses.”
Former Savoy chief executive Ramon Pajares warns that hotel staff should not be the first casualties of the looming recession. 


By Chris Druce


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