Sodexo food voted one of Inspirefest highlights

The catering provided by Sodexo at Inspirefest 2016 made the top ten event highlights list compiled by Silicon Republic, Ireland’s leading online source for technology, science and start-up news, information and resources.

It was Sodexo’s first year to sponsor the international festival of technology, science, design and the arts, with diversity and inclusion at its heart.  Country president Margot Slattery took part in the Diversity and Inclusion panel debate on the opening day of the conference at the Bord Gais Energy Theatre on Thursday 30th June 2016.

The impact of the event was such that the Inspirefest hashtag was trending on Twitter in Ireland on the first day of the event and continues to be a topic of conversation, still achieving 300k impressions a month afterwards.

Ann O’Dea, the founder of the ground-breaking sci-tech event, said, Working with Sodexo on Inspirefest was a joy. The creative use of fresh, Irish ingredients by executive chef Julianne Forrestal and her wonderful team was the toast of the three days, with our international visitors in particular blown away by the ingenuity of the menus and the professionalism and courtesy of the whole catering team.”


Her words were echoed by many of the delegates on Twitter, with comments like ‘hands down, best conference food I’ve ever had’, ‘beautiful food from Sodexo UK and Ireland at Inspirefest’ and ‘had super healthy lunch at Inspirefest’.

Sodexo provided catering and hospitality at three different locations in Dublin. At the speaker and guest welcome evening in Teelings Whiskey Distillery on Wed 29 June, at which Mary Mitchell O’Connor, Minister for Jobs, Enterprise and Innovation, was the guest of honour, Executive Chef Julianne Forrestal and her team designed and executed a menu that reflected the latest food trends and used the best local and seasonal produce.  Four designated taster stations allowed guests to move around freely and chat to the chef team about each dish in more detail.

The menu ranged from smoked mackerel rillettes and Teeling cured salmon and salt hake puree with roast peppers and vino cotto, to Dublin Bay prawns in Kataffi pastry with Teeling’s marie-rose sauce and rare Irish beef with basil mayonnaise.

For conference delegates at the Bord Gais Energy Theatre, Sodexo supplied, via Freshways, over 1,700 lunchboxes in three options - “meat eater”, “superfoodie” and “vegan”. They included a selection of artisan products from supplier partners; fresh, energizing juices; nutritious salads and wraps and raw fruit snacks. There was also a foldout about the company that featured some top tips to eat, drink and hang out in Dublin from Michelin-starred chef and TV personality Derry Clarke, its long-time catering consultant.


The brochure was produced on 100% recycled paper and the cardboard lunchboxes were recycled by the venue at the end of each day. Surplus food was redistributed to a local charity via Food.Cloud, a Dublin-based non-profit organisation that offers a fast and efficient way for businesses to donate surplus food to people who need it.

Each evening at the Inspirefest Fringe in Merrion Square, Sodexo provided an outdoor buffet service for conference guests and hosted a Sodexo Health and Wellness Zone for all visitors. Sodexo staff engaged with Fringe-goers to tell them about its approach to health and wellness. Visitors enjoyed a free massage from the Mindwell therapists, received advice from well-known nutritional consultant and cook Dorcas Barry and had their balance and core strength assessed by the Healthworks at Sodexo team. As Euro 2016 was in full swing, many visitors jumped at the chance to take on Irish international soccer star and TV sports commentator Stephanie Roche, the company’s Health & Wellbeing Ambassador, in the Footie Keepie Uppie Challenge.

Margot Slattery, country president, Sodexo Ireland, said, “I want to say a heartfelt thank you to all our senior team and staff for the wonderful show they put on at Inspirefest. It was a real celebration of all that we do. The feedback we received was spectacular and I am extremely proud to report that our reputation for food quality and service has reached a new high.”

Sodexo Ireland is a leading provider of services that improve the quality of life to clients in business and industry, education, financial services and healthcare. It employs approximately 2,100 staff in 200 locations across Ireland, serves 90,000 people daily and spent €21 million on local Irish food in 2015.


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