When 17000 fans are hungry
PostFinance Arena Berne. During home games Sportgastro AG caters to around 17000 fans on a single match day. If the fans get hungry then what they eat must taste good and be served promptly. Despite this, the fact that sustainability doesn’t have to take a back seat is shown by Thomas Herger.
The approx. 17000 fans who arrive at the ice hockey arena in Berne are spoilt for choice when it comes to grabbing a bite to eat. Three restaurants, 22 lodges and the many food stands right by the spectator stand offer everything the heart desires. But anyone automatically associating piles of rubbish and discarded food with such a catering enterprise would be very wrong.
Only half the amount of frying oil
The business embarked upon a long-term cooperation over two years ago with Solfina. Around 12 fryers are operated in the stadium, the oil for which previously had to be disposed of every four match days. Using Solfina filter pads the oil lasts much longer, even though the fryers operate at very high capacity. This does not only translate into considerable cost savings, but also protects valuable resources. The system is extremely straightforward to use and since the filter pads remove substances causing fats to spoil in a natural process, the strict hygiene regulations governing the use of oil can easily be met.
300 kg de frites en seulement 30 minutes
The greatest challenge with such a large number of guests is serving a high-quality product in the shortest space of time. During the two 15-minute breaks, apart from hundreds of bratwursts, over 300 kg of fried chips are also served over the counter: everything has to be smoothly coordinated. But good food is not enough. ‘When your team’s winning food tastes even better’, notes Thomas Herger, the head of the public catering service at the PostFinance Arena, from personal experience. ‘On the other hand, you sometimes also have to ignore the frustrated tone of the fans of the losing team. Ice hockey is an emotional sport; that’s what makes working in a stadium so special, no two days are alike.’
Between cost efficiency and sustainability
The PostFinance Arena was the first ice hockey stadium in Switzerland to change over to returnable cups. This triggered a series of further improvements in terms of sustainability. The importance of using regional suppliers has meant, for example, that instead of only ordering certain cuts of beef, all the cuts were ordered from regional butchers, enabling the entire animal to be utilised. Generally speaking, very little is thrown away at the PostFinance Arena; experienced purchasers know how much is needed at certain times. If something is left over after a match day, it is used the next day for the midday menu at the restaurant. www.sportgastro.ch
Head of public catering service at Postfinance Areal, Bern, Sportgastro AG