Tong Garden Centre Cafes win the Sustainability Award

Tong Garden Centre Catering is the winner of the Garden Centre Catering Sustainability Award

The Winner of the Sustainability Award, Tong Garden Centre Catering, Tong, Bradford, is another independently owned business, Tong Garden Centre, which is nestled between the cities of Leeds and Bradford and set in 17 acres of beautiful countryside, offers a wide choice of plants and gardening products and also has an inspiring home, toy and gift department, as well as a food hall. In addition, visitors can also browse several retail concessions, including Maidenhead Aquatics, Pavers Shoes and Bon Marche,while children are particularly well served with the Grass Hoppers indoor and outdoor play areas.

There are two table service eateries at Tong, Blooms Kitchen and The Mezzanine, both of which offer different menus. Blooms Kitchen offers hearty breakfast and lunchtime fare, with such traditional family favourites as fish and chips and homemade meat and potato pie taking pride of place on the lunch menu, plus a choice of two full English options and a range of lighter bites for breakfast. Diners can also enjoy a choice of teatime treats including freshly baked scones with jam and cream.

The Mezzanine is a licensed restaurant with a more sophisticated vibe – think gourmet burgers, smoked haddock and slow-cooked braised beef at lunch time, together with interesting salads and toasted sandwiches. These are complemented with an extensive selection of patisserie and the Mezzanine’s signature afternoon tea.

All of this is very impressive, but it was Tong’s sustainability credentials that really captured the judges’ imaginations. All of its takeaway packaging is compostable and, along with its food waste, it can be recycled into an energy source and fertiliser.

One of the pledges made by Tong’s catering team as part of its Carbon Literacy Project is to implement kitchen ‘fire up’ and ‘fire down’ schedules to combat and reduce wasted utilities, a strategy that is expected to save 10-15% of its kitchen utility consumption within a year. The company is also researching heat recovery as a way to harness the waste heat from its fridge plant to provide free hot water and, in addition, it plans to introduce a food waste best practice group, which will train the kitchen and catering teams how to optimise processes from ordering, storing, cooking and serving of foods to reduce waste in every way possible.  

Grden Centre Catering extends its heartiest congratulations to Tong's Catering team

Tong’s ongoing commitment to sustainability will feature in the Autumn issue of Garden Centre Catering



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