How to Handle Dietary Preferences at Corporate Meetings

special dietary needs corporate meetings

How to Handle Dietary Preferences at Corporate Meetings

special dietary needs corporate meetings

One of our Senior Project Managers recently participated in a webinar regarding food allergies and dietary preferences at corporate meetings.  One standout lesson was that in addition to the standards preferences, i.e. gluten, lactose, vegan, vegetarian, shellfish, there are a number of new labels for food preferences.  Have you ever heard the label “reducetarian”?   Reducetarians are committed to eating less animal protein – red meat, poultry, seafood, fewer eggs and dairy.

It is no longer a random few.  Our attendees lists include up to 30% requesting special dietary considerations for group meals.  The challenge to keep up with these numbers has been met and embraced by Executive Chefs who are creating and implementing special allergy/dietary preference programs in their hotels and restaurants.

The webinar, hosted by Tracy Stuckrath, CSEP, CMM, CHC, CFPM, included some great information. The strongest takeaways being:

  • Include your request for accommodating dietary preferences during sourcing.  In the RFP process, ask specific questions directed to the culinary team and carefully review the responses.
  • Request to meet culinary staff on the site visit and, once again, review the hotel’s policy on dietary preferences.
  • Add “mocktails” to your reception menus to allow guests to enjoy a fun, tasty non-alcoholic drink.  This drink does not necessarily need to be sugary and full of calories.  Create a low-calorie mocktail using flavored seltzer, pressed juices, and herbs like basil or mint.

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