Food and mealtimes are essential parts of our daily lives and in this latest episode of The Maritime Podcast Christian Ioannou, Group CEO of MCTC, talks to Marcus Hand, Editor of Seatrade Maritime News, about the importance of marine catering.
Social isolation of seafarers, especially during the pandemic, and the impact of this on their mental health has become a serious issue. Mealtimes represent a time to relax and interact with colleagues and if that experience is coloured by the quality of food that is served.
Ioannou explains to The Maritime Podcast, “Imagine the food not being to the best standards onboard the vessel and that 15 - 20 minutes that the crew will be spending with each other is not the quality time they should be having, then obviously that is a big issue. So, it's extremely, extremely important.
“They can't go ashore, they can't go to a restaurant, they can't go to the Seafarer’s club, they can't go anywhere. They're isolated, literally isolated, onboard the vessel, and the responsibility of the cook is enormous.”
Listen to the full interview in the player above or on the app of your choice
MCTC places a lot of stress on keeping the cook motivated and ensuring they use quality ingredients to provide both tasty and nutritional meals. Ioannou says by doing this it can have a positive impact on vessel operations and financially.
Asked on The Maritime Podcast about the ROI of ensuring quality marine catering he explains: “Keeping the cooks on board educated motivated, acknowledging what they do, they will take the extra mile. I can guarantee that they will do the cake a little bit better than we will bake themselves.
“By doing all of those things we did the health and cost analysis report where we can actually say that when the cook produces dishes from scratch onboard, the owners, the operators, they can definitely save around 15% of their budgets, or let's say better utilized, rather than buying really convenience foods as convenience foods are also very expensive.”