Reimagining the meal experience

Posted on Wednesday, June 3, 2020

Since joining Brightwater in June 2019, Brightwater Hospitality Services Manager, Philip (Phil) Waldron has been avidly developing the ‘Reimagining the meal experience’ project. The project aims to reinvent how food is prepared, including regular menu changes, and how these meals are served to clients.

“In late 2019, the current food practice was reviewed across all sites, including our commercial catering site in Malaga,” Phil explained.

“The project has a strong emphasis on better understanding nutritional requirements for all of our clients, including those with co-morbidities and chronic disease, ensuring each client enjoys the process and their needs are met in the best way possible.”

Prior to COVID-19, Phil attended conferences and seminars to further expand his knowledge. He has worked with a group of chefs, dietitians and speech therapists to taste and discuss trial dishes that are not only enjoyable, but also meet the International Dysphagia Diet Standardisation Initiative (IDDSI).

“We want to give our clients more choice when it comes to what they would like to eat at mealtimes, and make the experience more social. During the trials we completed before COVID-19, we found the most impactful part of the method was the client interaction. Giving our clients a range of meal choices meant more interaction was developed between the clients and staff, and this has had
really positive outcomes,” Phil said.

The ‘Reimagining the meal experience project’ will enter into trial and implementation stage once it is safe to do so, with the following activities planned for the year:

  • Recipes and menus developed
  • Recipe testing and on-site trials
  • An extensive full site trial
  • Service model finalised
  • Roll out of new service model

Phil’s passion for food started almost 30 years ago. He has previously worked as the Food and Beverage Manager and Executive Chef at Joondalup Resort and as an Executive Chef with Perth Racing.

Phil said he was excited to be working towards a better meal experience for all residents.

“I want to ensure mealtimes are as enjoyable as possible – something a lot of us take for granted,” he said.

“My favourite thing about working with Brightwater is the possibility and opportunity to have a real and lasting impact."

Stay tuned in future editions of Brightlife to learn more about this exciting project as it progresses, and see how Phil and his team are ‘bringing the joy back to mealtimes’.