top of page

The whole food kitchen
in public catering
and restaurants 


Ebéd a Szilvásgombóc táborban.png

The introduction of whole foods and the sourcing of new ingredients can be a major challenge for caterers and restaurants. Our consultancy will develop a menu tailored to the needs of the place, provide retraining for kitchen staff and enable a smooth introduction of whole food kitchen.


Turning a public catering facility into a whole food kitchen is easier than you think. It's much easier to adopt than you might think, and there's no difficulty in staying within budget.

As an example, I will show you a kitchen for 900 people that I converted in a year and a half in a home for psychiatric patients in Szentgotthárd, Hungary.

The initial situation

  • The kitchen used powders. Soups, stews and any other dishes for which there was a Knorr or Maggi powder were made with them.

  • The amount of vegetables in soups was minimal, specifically 100 portions contained 7-8 kg of vegetables.

  • Relatively little milk and dairy products were used, which was only a problem because the OETI (National Institute of Food Science) specifications were considerably higher.

  • 18 tonnes of sugar were consumed per year.

  • Fruit was scarce.

  • Only products made from refined flour were used, no wholemeal cereals at all.

  • Cooking was done with refined oils, butter was non-existent.

  • There was meat at almost every meal, cold cuts and sausages in the evening and in the morning.

  • Lots of ready-made products, tinned meat products, cheese, pastries, sweets, lots of inefficient, polluting mini-packaging.

  • Both residents and staff complained of digestive problems, clearly the result of an unhealthy diet

What has changed

The most difficult part of the challenge was how to turn a very unhealthy kitchen into a healthy one that everyone would accept. To achieve this, we resorted to the very simple trick of introducing changes in such a way that they were as invisible as possible. Changes introduced in very small steps are much more acceptable than trying to change everything all at once.


  • The staff of the institute, the kitchen staff and the residents all took part in a series of presentations and discussions.

  • The recipe was rewritten, following the principle of gradualism. A multi-year plan was drawn up to introduce new ingredients and foods.

  • We threw out all the flavour enhancing powders, semi-finished and finished products that were lined up in five kilo boxes.

  • In one year, we reduced meat by 25% overall, but increased fresh vegetables by 55% and fresh fruit by 62%.

  • We introduced wholemeal organic cereals and a few other organic products that we could afford

  • The institute bought a mill to make wholemeal flour.

  • The amount of sugar, which was 18 t in a psychiatric institute(!), was reduced by a third in a year.

  • We introduced a winter and summer menu.

  • We launched a vegetarian menu.

  • We asked for monthly feedback from residents and staff

To sum up...


It is possible to adapt public catering, whether it is a nursery, a school or a social institution, in accordance with existing regulations, so that it is healthy, tasty, aesthetic, nutritious and tasty for children and adults alike.

And all within the budget of the institution.

Comment from the OETI

The then Director-General of the National Institute of Food Science (OÉTI) and his staff were invited to present our findings after the restructuring. In their report they wrote the following:

"We consider it essential to communicate the results as widely as possible, as the exemplary work is a good practice that many others can follow and emulate".

Teljes értékű fánk az egyetemi menza
bottom of page