Catering Working Group meeting - 18 February
The Association of Event Venues (AEV) Catering Working Group held its first meeting of the year at the Royal Dublin Society (RDS), Dublin, Ireland, on 18 February 2016. The members of the group travelled to Dublin a day before the meeting, and enjoyed the preceding evening in the company of the RDS hospitality team.
Opening the meeting, the chair, Phil Wetz of ExCeL London, thanked the RDS for hosting the meeting, and its hospitality team for making the group so welcome. Following apologies and approval of the minutes of the last meeting, the group moved on to the substantive discussion topics.
The first topic was knowledge and information sharing amongst the group, and this generated a great deal of detailed and specific discussion, ranging over areas such as the metrics of success, capital expenditure commitments for catering companies, and how venues change their public catering offers to suit different events. The group discussed their specific experiences and policies, their merits and drawbacks, and collectively identified developing trends.
The next item for discussion was the question of how to encourage greater participation in the group amongst member venues. Suggestions came thick and fast with several action points emerging including a commitment to testing the waters of social media to increase the group's profile. Group members agreed to prepare a paper explaining the advantages of membership, in order to encourage participation in the group amongst other AEV members. The group also agreed to extend future meetings to three hours in order to accommodate venue tours from the host venues.
The meeting then concluded with news from members of the group around the table, and the date for the next meeting was set as November 30 2016, with both ExCel London and AECC offering to host the event.