Tag: inclusion

Aimee Francaes holding tongs with a steak on the grill

Tales from the Belly of the Beast – An Interview with Aimee Francaes

Aimee Francaes and her husband designed a restaurant like no other — locally sourced ingredients prepared, butchered, and preserved in house, a comprehensive accommodation of those with food allergies, and a staff so well-trained that everyone can feel safe that their needs will be met. Oh, and the food is amazing.   When a friend heard I was going to celebrate women who are making history in food and beverage for Women’s History Month, Aimee Francaes immediately sprang to mind. Aimee and the love of her life, Jesse Hassinger opened Belly of the Beast almost three years ago with a…

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religious dietary restrictions August

August Religious Dietary Restrictions Calendar

August Religious Dietary Restrictions In keeping with my commitment to provide a helpful monthly calendar to everyone on religious dietary restrictions, here are August religious dietary restrictions dates to keep in mind this month. August 1 — Fast in Honor of the Holy Mother of Lord Jesus Observance & Dietary Restriction The Fast in Honor of the Holy Mother of Lord Jesus is a two week fasting period observed by Eastern Orthodox Christians to commemorate the death and burial of the Virgin Mary. Beginning on August first, Eastern Orthodox Christians forgo most proteins including dairy products, red meat, chicken, and…

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Celebrating Independence

Celebrating Independence

  How to Make it Easier for Those with Dietary Needs to Eat Safely & Feel Included As we (i.e., me and my U.S.-based readers) celebrated 242 years our country’s independence this week, I got to thinking about the words independence and freedom, how they relate to food and beverage, and what I do to promote safe and inclusive food environments. By Merriam-Webster’s definition, independence, in the simplest of terms, is “the quality or state of not being under the control of, reliant on, or connected with someone or something else.” And the definition of freedom is “the absence of necessity, coercion, or constraint in choice…

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religious dietary restrictions

July Religious Dietary Restrictions Calendar

In keeping with my commitment to bring a helpful monthly religious dietary restrictions calendar to everyone, here are July dates to keep in mind as you plan menus for July events. July 10th Observance & Dietary Restriction Martyrdom of the Báb is a Baha’i observance beginning at sunset on July 9th and ending at the end of the day on July 10th. It is a time of mourning for The Báb who was a prophet and founder of the Baha’i faith. He was executed on this day in 1850. How to include participants Because this is a time of mourning…

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Religious Dietary Restrictions Guide - Thrive!

Religious Dietary Restrictions: Your Essential Quick Reference Guide

There are many religions with dietary restrictions and food traditions. Some are more famous than others, but all need to be respected and observed as closely as we are able when menu planning. This is your Thrive! guide to religious dietary restrictions.  Also, this isn’t comprehensive, and there are some differences in food rules across denominations. Plus, some people will observe these rules differently and with varied commitment. The best habit for us as HR professionals, caterers, chefs, and menu planners is to: Ask the attendee or employee what their requirements are prior to the event. Plan on accommodating as…

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dietary restrictions and invisible disabilities

Thrive! With Dietary Restrictions and Invisible Disabilities, Part Two

We know what disabilities are, and I discussed invisible disabilities in, “Thrive! With Invisible Disabilities, Part One.” In part two, I want to chat about some of the behaviors and concepts that will help illustrate dietary restrictions and invisible disabilities. As a reminder, invisible disabilities are also called hidden disabilities because they are restrictions that aren’t clearly visible or apparent. Food allergies and intolerances are included when we talk about invisible disabilities because, just like asthma, arthritis, and other conditions, diseases, and dysfunctions, we can’t see the challenges those with invisible disabilities may be experiencing. The Americans with Disabilities Act…

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Two men bullied at corporate awards banquet for having food allergies

Two Men with Food Allergies Bullied by Coworkers at Awards Dinner

Not Being able to Eat Wheat or Shellfish is No Reason to be Bullied Last week I was at an event where I witnessed two men being bullied/teased/harassed—whatever you want to call it—about their dietary need. I was stunned, embarrassed and utterly dumbfounded. The event was an awards dinner for a corporation and one at which I was hired to manage the food and beverage and oversee the safe execution of special meals for 18 people with dietary needs (a low number considering other events I've done, but still seven percent of the group). The two men who were being…

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An Open Letter to the Meetings Industry

Meetings Industry – An Open Letter on Inclusion

Dear Meetings Industry, In June 2016, I attended Meeting Professionals International (MPI) World Education Congress. As usual, the international conference was well attended and a wonderful gathering of top industry professionals. We studied food and beverage topics, budgeting, international trends, hybrid and virtual meetings and more. Added to this year’s event was a celebration of inclusion ... mostly. Unfortunately, the convention occurred on the heels of the tragic LGBT nightclub shooting in Florida, where 49 people were killed, over 50 were injured, and over 200 were held hostage until the gunman’s death, when police stormed the club around 2 a.m.…

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Food Allergies

Eight Ways Meeting Planners Can Advocate for Guests with Food Allergies

From employee picnics and business lunches to association conferences and corporate conventions, food-allergic employees and event participants have a lot to navigate when at work or business and social functions . As professional meeting professionals, we have a duty of care at all times. People must be able to trust us with their health and safety while they are at the meetings and events we plan. To justify that trust, we must make the care of our event participants, supplier partners, exhibitors, speakers, sponsors and staff our first concern, treating them as individuals and respecting their dignity and their needs. That includes ensuring…

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