If you’re planning a big event, some of the biggest decisions involve picking the right venue, theme and entertainment to match. However, you almost must consider health and safety, including managing food and beverage at your event or festival.
Fortunately, there’s plenty of tips and solutions available when you contact professional event managers and custom party planners. One of the biggest issues people ask about is managing food and beverage at events, festivals, fundraisers and corporate parties. The following provides some ideas and information on this important issue.
Food and Beverage Tips for Events
Managing food and beverage at a big event should be a front burner issue for party planners. But there’s plenty of guidance available. For example, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has provided guidelines that offer some good ideas, some of them designed for safety during the coronavirus pandemic.
The following tips for managing food and beverages at events is based on those recommendations and years of experience in planning and managing parties.
Outsource Food and Beverage
If it’s within the party budget, one of the best choices is to have food provided by a trusted catering service. This includes trusted third party contractors or, in the case of college campus events, the school’s on-campus food vendors. With experience in handling food and beverages, they will already meet all regulations that govern food service.
Rather than having an open buffet or self-serve station, consider pre-packaged grab-and-go meals provided by a caterer. If food is served at the event, then have servers there who provide individually plated meals.
Plan for using disposable utensils and dishes that can be tossed after one use. If that is not possible, then event workers should handle every non-disposable food service item with gloves and wash them with dish soap and hot water (or by running them through a dishwasher). The CDC recommends that all event workers practice good hygiene by washing hands frequently or using hand sanitizer.
Party planners should discourage people from sharing food at the event, as well as utensils and plates. This not only cuts down on transmission of viruses of all types, but also protects people with food allergies.
A Word on COVID-19
With the COVID-19 virus not disappearing any time soon, it’s an issue party planners must tackle. There are two chief issues to keep in mind, both from the CDC. The first is that the more people at a party and the longer they interact, the higher potential risk to transmit the virus. The second is that a higher level of community transmission in the area also increases the risk.
The good news is that community transmission has drastically dropped, a trend that will hopefully continue.
These tips for managing food and beverage at events can get you started on the right path to serving guests delicious food while also ensuring their safety. Event consultants can provide more detail on how to handle these important issues.