Hosting inclusive work events is essential for creating a positive work culture. It not only promotes collaboration and teamwork but also promotes diversity and inclusion in the workplace. However, catering to the dietary needs of all attendees can be a daunting task. In this article, we’ll explore the importance of inclusive events and discuss different menu options that cater to different preferences and dietary restrictions.
What you can expect in this article:
The Importance of Inclusive Events
Inclusive events promote a sense of belonging and diversity in the workplace. It can help improve relationships between team members while also showcasing a company’s commitment to diversity and inclusivity. In addition, inclusive events can positively impact productivity and team dynamics. When employees feel valued and included, they’re more likely to be engaged, which can lead to higher productivity levels.
Types of Work Events and Dietary Restrictions
Different types of work events require different menu options. For example, a business networking event may require lighter meals than a holiday party. Here are some typical work events and the dietary restrictions to consider:
For meetings, it’s good to offer light snacks such as fruit, vegetables, and cheese platters. While dietary restrictions are fewer, it’s good to include vegan, gluten-free, and dairy-free options as well.
Networking events require a more substantial menu, with appetisers and plated options. It’s essential to consider a range of dietary restrictions and Halal/Kosher options too.
Holiday parties, such as at Christmas time, may have a more relaxed atmosphere, but it’s still important to consider different dietary restrictions, from vegetarian and vegan to gluten-free and lactose intolerant. Traditional holiday foods can also be modified to include healthier options, offering to appease more guests.
Conferences and Large Events
Conferences can include breakfast, lunch, or dinner. It’s important to keep in mind different dietary preferences as well as the ranges of dietary restrictions with insight into alleviating rare allergies or intolerances.
It may seem challenging to create a menu that caters to different dietary restrictions and preferences. But certain options can satisfy different people. Here are some options to consider:
Vegetarian and Vegan
Vegetarian and vegan options can be easier than expected to create. Replacing meat dishes with lentil Bolognese, vegan chilli, veggie sliders, or vegan Mac & Cheese can offer healthy and tasty alternatives.
Going gluten-free is simpler than you may think. Sweet potatoes, quinoa, brown rice, and courgette noodles are gluten-free and still delicious. Using gluten-free alternatives for pizza and pasta can make for easy catering changes.
It’s much easier today to avoid dairy than it was before. In desserts, consider ingredients like coconut cream instead of double cream. Use olive oil instead of butter, or a vegan cheese alternative in salads and pizza.
Non-Alcoholic Drink Options
It is essential when planning any event that includes alcohol to make sure that non-alcoholic options are available. Crafting mocktails and other non-alcoholic options can be just as exciting and refreshing as alcoholic drinks. Tea, coffee, soda, and water can also be excellent options, as well as non-alcoholic beer, sparkling tea and wine.
Creating an Inclusive Menu
Planning an inclusive menu may seem daunting, but by catering to different dietary needs, you’ll be supporting your team and creating better work culture. Offering some vegetarian and vegan options, gluten-free alternatives, and dairy-free dishes make it simple and a good opportunity to create a healthier plate for everybody. Providing non-alcoholic options where alcohol consumers can still feel like they’re offering cheers to those abstaining also creates equity among attendees. Alleviating as many dietary restrictions as possible and maintaining a diverse and inclusive menu will ensure a successful and enjoyable event.