Director | Global Infusion Group
Food service is about consistency, reliability and predictability, which leads to satisfied clients and customers on both ends of the equation.
Mary Shelley-Smith, with 32 years of experience with Global Infusion Group’s Eat To The Beat hospitality division, says that consistent quality has been maintained despite upheaval in the industry.
“Even without the global pandemic we’ve been through a massive period of transition,” she says of GIG specifically, which has been consolidated under one roof at a new building in Aston Clinton, UK.
“Sadly, we lost our founder Tony Laurenson in January 2021, which obviously had a huge impact on us all but we vowed at the time to ‘ride on’ in his memory and despite the challenges of the last few years, we’ve survived and are doing well.”
Doing well means service at a high level, she says.
“We’ve been involved in some really impressive events again the last year: the Coronation of TM King Charles III and Queen Camilla; Coldplay’s global tour; artist catering at Glastonbury, Isle of Wight, BST Hyde Park and tours with Avril Lavigne, Black Keys, Iron Maiden, Rod Stewart, Orbital,” she says.
She credits the “brilliant team with the right people in the right jobs, and that really takes the pressure off.”
“In terms of tips and tricks; we concentrate on getting the basics right, going for the guts rather than the glory and the shine follows,” she says. “We break projects into bite sized chunks that are easier to tackle and try to get ahead of ourselves as much as we possibly can. My other top tip would be to confirm everything in writing!”
With the concert industry specifically singing the success of 2023, Shelley-Smith says there does appear to be a bit of a lull in the fourth quarter.
“To be honest touring wise, Q4 is looking quieter, it doesn’t feel like there’s the same level of shows this winter as there was last year or pre-pandemic,” she says.
“Even Stateside it’s fairly quiet. Whilst there’s quite a few individual shows, they’re not big tours and inevitably smaller shows don’t have the same requirements.
“There is a trend for catering to be one of the last things to be booked and requirements are definitely more budget dependent than ever before so it could be that things pick up. That said, we’ve still got a lot of work on in the winter. We’re about to head out to Rome for the Ryder Cup and we have plenty of other corporate and film and TV work during the final few months of the year.”