Hospitals win silver catering mark
SOUTHMEAD and Frenchay hospitals are the first in the country to be given a special catering mark from the Soil Association for the quality of meals it prepares for patients.
They are the only hospitals in the UK to have received the silver Food for Life catering mark from the Bristol-based charity that campaigns for better food standards.
North Bristol NHS Trust (NBT), which runs the hospitals, has received the recognition for its commitment to obtaining Farm Assured meat, free range eggs and fish from sustainable stocks, provided by local suppliers.
The trust said the way it sources its ingredients means that all meat is traceable back to the local farm it came from and can confirm there is no horse meat or traces of horse DNA in any of its food.
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Each day 2,500 patient meals are made by the trust's chefs, with most of the ingredients sourced locally, which 93 per cent of people voted as good or excellent following a hospital stay.
They obtain 100 per cent organic mince beef from St Werburgh's butcher John Sheppard, ice cream from nearby Marshfield Farm, bread and cakes from a bakery in Yatton, fish from a supplier in St Philip's, milk from Wellington and ham and cheese from Somerset.
The trust said as the Food for Life Catering Mark is the UK's only independent accreditation scheme that sets the standards of tracing food. All meat has to fulfil the requirements for UK Assured Food Standards (AFS).
Simon Wood, director of facilities at NBT, said: "Ensuring that fresh, local and quality food is the focus of our menus is so important in nutritional terms for the well-being and recovery of patients while they are with us in hospital."
Rob Sexton, chief executive of Soil Association Certification, said: "Patients in Frenchay and Southmead hospitals are unique in being served food that meets the very demanding standards required."