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Written by: Sarah Kirton on Oct 8th, 2021

CaterCloud 2021: Catering Professionals Favorite Tool

Paul Mizen, CEO of CaterCloud, reveals more about this innovative business that helps hundreds of caterers to deliver compliance and control costs while helping to reduce food safety risks, and it’s FREE!

Please tell us about CaterCloud and what it offers its clients.

CaterCloud helps thousands of caterers to deliver compliance and control costs, while helping to reduce food safety risks, backed by a team of people with industry knowledge, including Rob Henry, our Quality Assurance and Technical Manager.

Essentially, we allow the client to manage their food from supplier to plate and manage their costs effectively. With world food prices fluctuating constantly, our system allows live cost updates to be highlighted.

Many people are busy running the ins and outs of the business and fail to look at the invoicing at the end of each week. CaterCloud can alert them to any changes in costs that have taken place.

It also gives them compliance when it comes to the food coming in. If, for example, a different brand of salad cream is delivered, our system will highlight the differences in allergen content in this product, compared perhaps to the brand that’s usually used.

CaterCloud gives compliance and reassurance (at the touch of a button) that all will run smoothly, while you get on with the day-to-day running of your enterprise. We always have technical experts available, ready to answer any questions that may arise.

Who’s your target audience?

Our biggest audience is care, we are the UK’s biggest, independent, leading care sector partner. We also look after education and in particular schools, which are a big part of our business along with hospitals, contract caterers, and hospitality.

Do you believe that the emergence of food allergies has increased over the last couple of decades, and if so, why?

Advancements in medical science, coupled with the internet have made us all more aware of allergens. With the internet, this “just click to see” philosophy gives us huge amounts of information in the blink of an eye. Most people, including youngsters, are much more aware of life and their surroundings.

I also believe our immune systems aren’t as strong as they used to be due to our lifestyles: We now live in air-con buildings where germs circulate, we eat more processed food than we've ever eaten before which contains numerous additives to keep the food fresher for longer.

How has Natasha’s Law impacted your business, if at all?

We started building CaterCloud three years ago as we were aware that our clients needed to be allergen aware within their business due to new regulations that were coming in. Natasha's law has kept the team incredibly busy making sure that we were compliant across the system.

Our clients now all benefit from our robust system that provides them with the data to ensure they meet government guidelines. We’ve actually allowed people to use CaterCloud for FREE since the emergence of the pandemic.

What advice do you have for new, small businesses confronted with the rules and regulations linked with food safety and food service?

Don't take the first system you see, do your homework, and don't overpay for a system. There are many businesses out there that scaremonger. Remember it’s your duty as a business to be compliant whether it’s a small company or large company, so it’s important to put the effort in. Without clients, there’s no business.

We made the decision to give CaterCloud away FREE to the industry because of the number of businesses that were suffering due to COVID, it was my way of giving something back to an industry that I’ve been involved in since the age of 14.

How did CaterCloud survive the pandemic?

​​We were very lucky to be involved with the industry sectors that still had to trade such as care homes. This sector was the least affected by the pandemic and we were still maintaining 80% turnover throughout. We even took on two large care home groups in the middle of the pandemic, a true testament to the whole team.

The pandemic actually made people realize that the care home industry is a solid business that operates twelve months a year. In addition, it kept many other businesses afloat during these hard times.

Tell us about your Buyer’s Club.

We purchase around 80 million pounds worth of food per year for our clients and we also have direct manufacturer deals in place with major food companies which helps us to achieve great pricing on main lines.

Being part of the Buyer’s Club allows our clients to take advantage of the various deals e.g. tea, coffee, sugar, milk, fruit juice, and much more, saving 15-20% on average on prices. The clients also benefit from due diligence, by us knowing where everything is sourced. 

Our latest deal is with a national bread manufacturer who now sells into all of our supply chains, meaning all our clients get the same bread and at a better deal. This is helping to offset some of the price increases.

What lies ahead for CaterCloud?

The best attribute is that all our developers are based in our own business. We have offices in London with a team of fifteen people constantly researching and developing for CaterCloud. 

We have monthly development days where we invite a number of our clients. This way we’re able to get their feedback on the system and their ideas of how to develop the system for their benefit. They are without doubt the most important people to us.

We already have clients in Spain, Australia, and France and we intend to take the system worldwide within the next twelve months. The team and I are all very excited about the opportunities that lie ahead of us.

What is the future of FoodTech in your opinion?

Food-tech is brilliant as it brings people closer to food and makes people more aware, instantly. These days, you simply have to swipe to see a restaurant menu and see what you could potentially be allergic to. It’s a massive industry that covers all aspects.

Since the virus, we‘ve seen a massive increase in wholesalers embracing systems like CaterCloud; in fact, I would say that it’s increased by 100% since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic. People now realize that using tech in food takes away a lot of costs and gives you more control of your business, less time for error, and more time for people.

We aim to continually invest in our systems to improve our tech offer for our clients not just in food, but right across the board. Our team consists of techies and foodies ONLY. We’re all set to head into the future of food-tech!

About The Author

Sarah Kirton

PR Writer, Delivery Rank

A wannabe global ‘food-trotter,’ Sarah nurtures a deep-seated passion for food and cultural diversity and believes the two go hand in hand. Having lived in Europe for many years she has a great knowledge of Mediterranean and French cuisine. She now lives in Cape Town, the food capital of Africa. When she is not dining out or cooking up a storm you will find her kite-surfing on the ocean, up a mountain, or cuddling her cat Samson!

A wannabe global ‘food-trotter,’ Sarah nurtures a deep-seated passion for food and cultural diversity and believes the two go hand in hand. Having lived in Europe for many years she has a great knowledge of Mediterranean and French cuisine. She now lives in Cape Town, the food capital of Africa. When she is not dining out or cooking up a storm you will find her kite-surfing on the ocean, up a mountain, or cuddling her cat Samson!
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