catering / hospitality / foodservice

Tifoso Bonisolli

Senior Member
German - Austria
Hello everybody,
I'm looking for some clarification on the meaning of "catering" and similar terms. A British public administration website defines "the catering sector" as "covering restaurants, hotels, take-aways, public houses and night clubs", whereas I found on another language forum (in German) a post by a Californian member who said that catering, in his region, has the exclusive meaning of "a catering professional setting up a buffet at your home so that you don't have to cook yourself when throwing a party". Was that Californian wrong, or is there a better (i. e. universally accepted) term for what the official British definition comprises? To put it more precisely, I'm looking for a term applying to the businessmen in that sector that the British government is calling the catering sector (i.e. confirmation of the term "caterer" having the "British" meaning, or a universally accepted alternative term). "Restaurateur" means "restaurant owner" only, thus excluding bar owners and the like, if I'm not mistaken?
Could you please help, anybody?
 
  • bibliolept

    Senior Member
    AE, Español
    I think that where that British website used catering, an AE speaker would use "the hospitality sector." I suppose that "catering" might be used by some that way by food service professionals who speak AE, but to the average AE speaker catering will have a meaning similar to what is discussed in this thread: Catering.
     

    bibliolept

    Senior Member
    AE, Español
    Based on wikipedia, it looks like "the catering industry" in BE is exactly the same as "the foodservice industry" in AE. There is no universal term.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Foodservice
    As hotels were mentioned in the original post, I do think "hospitality industry" would perhaps be a more suitable choice, in any case.

    Hospitality refers to the relationship process between a guest and a host, and it also refers to the act or practice of being hospitable, that is, the reception and entertainment of guests, visitors, or strangers, with liberality and goodwill. Hospitality frequently refers to the hospitality industry jobs for hotels, restaurants, casinos, catering, resorts, clubs and any other service position that deals with tourists.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hospitality

    The hospitality industry consists of companies within the food services, accommodations, recreation, and entertainment sectors.[1]

    The hospitality industry is a several billion dollar industry that mostly depends on the availability of leisure time and disposable income. A hospitality unit such as a restaurant, hotel, or even an amusement park consists of multiple groups such as facility maintenance, direct operations (servers, housekeepers, porters, kitchen workers, bartenders, etc.), management, marketing, and human resources.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hospitality_industry
     

    Tifoso Bonisolli

    Senior Member
    German - Austria
    Well, thank you both. But referring to the enterpreneurs, how would you say? "Operators in the foodservice/hospitality industry"? Or is there something less wordy?
     

    Tifoso Bonisolli

    Senior Member
    German - Austria
    Well, actually, the sample sentence is in Italian (but I thought I might get more answers on the "English only" forum, since it's also an English-only problem, not fault of the Italian original), and then, it's also not a sentence - just a name: "Association of ... foodservice/hospitality entrepreneurs"?
     

    Majorbloodnock

    Senior Member
    British English
    Please also bear in mind that British bureaucracy is not the best place to find good English. In practical terms, catering simply means providing people with food and drink, whilst hospitality involves making people feel welcome. There is obviously a huge overlap between the two, but the UK understanding of the catering industry would certainly include more than just caterers who visit people's homes.

    It's also true that a catering entrepreneur might be a businessman exploiting a food/drink related opportunity even if the opportunity sits more within hospitality than the catering sector. For instance, corporate entertainment is primarily hospitality, but if you spotted an opportunity for providing peanuts in meeting rooms, you could still be a catering entrepreneur.
     
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