Avery Healthcare has launched a new initiative to ensure that all of its chefs can transform everyday meals into cutlery-free options.
Developed by Simon Lawrence, Avery’s head of culinary and hospitality, and Jo Crossland, head of dementia care, in collaboration with Premier Foods, the initiative includes mandatory workshops for culinary staff and a comprehensive training guide featuring recipes, hints and guidance.
The idea is that individuals requiring cutlery-free cuisine can enjoy the same food as their fellow residents, ensuring a dignified dining experience.
Lawrence said: “As chefs working in the care sector, it is of fundamental importance that we continue to develop and innovate through our culinary teams. We have worked hard to develop strong guidance to ensure that all our chefs can adapt everyday menu choices into cutlery-free meals. With guidance and encouragement, we are limited only by our imagination.”
Crossland added there are many reasons as to why a person may be unable to eat with cutlery.
“Conditions such as Parkinson’s disease, arthritis or a stroke can all affect how an individual can manipulate cutlery. Cognitive illnesses, including dementia, can cause a person to have difficulty processing their environment or cause problems with sequencing and coordinating actions.
“In the care home environment, although mealtimes have the potential to be among the most social and positive times of the day, for residents who have difficulty manipulating cutlery, the dining experience can be a problematic event, particularly if the right level of support is not in place.”