Sustainable Catering at Your Service

You’re brainstorming your next event in the Philadelphia area and find yourself stumped when trying to determine catering arrangements. How can you find the perfect venue to satisfy a variety of tastes while also maintaining a sustainable mindset? We’ve compiled a list of four unique, but simple eateries in Pennsylvania that certainly fall under these event goals.

1. The Sunflower Truck Stop: An extension of Shorty’s Sunflower Cafe, this mobile food supplier will conveniently travel to you. Not awed by their already incredibly appetizing menu? You can make your own “exotic” requests for the cooks to experiment with – they’re all for it!

2. Lucky Old Souls Burger Truck: Featuring your favorite “farm-to-truck” menu with local ingredients to concoct anything from house-made bacon and burgers to seasonal vegetables.

3. Farm Truck Philly: By simply visiting their website, you’ll immediately be sold. With a seasonal menu created with the highest quality ingredients, you can only opt for a tasty meal from this mobile catering option.

4. Cosmic Foods: With a commitment to Fair Trade, purchasing locally, and sustainability, Cosmic Catering is more than ideal for your upcoming event. If you’re looking for something more than the option on wheels, this is the perfect choice for you.

Each of these will not fail to disappoint the expectations held by you or your group. With a dedication to supplying hearty foods from the freshest farms, there’s no need to sacrifice taste for sustainability – it’s all here!

On Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR): What, how, & why we love it

CSR is the talk of the town of recent, and slowly but surely businesses are jumping on board to this new trend. With that said, the term is thrown around a whole lot, and while you may contribute to it’s reach, are you entirely aware of the meaning and what it involves?

Allow us to briefly elaborate. CSR incorporates social consciousness that extends from personal aspects like corporate citizenship to environmental means such as “going green”. In an effort to achieve this recognition, businesses may encourage team volunteer projects, green meetings, and sustainable incentive trips. Now, this is where we come in, and why we love CSR so much.

Successful companies promote employee involvement. By that we mean team bonding, efficient meetings, and friendly events beyond the professional field. And, we are here for just that. The planning. The nitty-gritty details that make many cringe. We do that. And guess what. We enjoy it. But, there’s more. What’s so special about your next corporate meeting or incentive trip if it’s not eco-conscious? In this day and age, with the extent of knowledge that people have acquired over the years, we owe loads of respect to our natural environment. It sustains us, so why shouldn’t we sustain it?

Not sure where to start? Well, the first step would be to come to us. From there you can let us know what you’re looking for – the destination you’re dreaming of, the type of team engagement your seeking. Below are a few examples of what we mean here at A&M.

Remember that culinary incentive trip to Italy featured on the blog several months back? Well, that option certainly still exists. Or how about taking a volunteer trip in South America? Talk about rewarding. If you’re looking for the ultimate relaxation in the sun, head to the Virgin Islands; St. John has some serious green thinking on their minds that we are thrilled to work with.

Rooftop solar panels in St. JohnThe options are endless, and that’s what makes incorporating CSR into planning so exciting! For more information on what we mean and how we promote our own social consciousness, visit our website!

Championing Green Meetings at IMEX 2013

ecocentric strategies

German Convention Bureau e.V. (GCB) proved once again that it leads the way in championing Green Meetings at IMEX 2013.

The umbrella organisation for the German meetings industry worked hard to ensure the sustainability of every aspect of its operation at IMEX. The strategy paid dividends, as its eco-friendly Germany Stand was proclaimed the winner of this year’s Green Exhibitor Award.

http://www.etravelblackboard.com/mice/article/143846/germany-stand-eco-friendly-and-sustainable

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What an Incentive!

Italy. Food. Bonding. What’s not to like?

A major part of being an effective team is maintaining the ability to cooperate with one another both inside and outside of the workplace. Bonding over fun and stress-free activities help to aquaint coworkers as well as develop relationships beyond the professional arena.

So that’s bonding, but what about Italy and food? They are both relevant, I promise. According to Flavor of Italy, cuisine related team building helps to boost morale, foster solidarity and collaboration, break down barriers, build new relationships at work with both customers and colleagues, improve time management skills, stimulate problem solving skills, as well as enhance creativity. Think about it: tradition has it that meals are not solely about the food, but also the social aspect of sitting down with others to enjoy a shared delicacy.

Italy Countryside

Now, let’s talk the real fun stuff. Flavor of Italy offers Corporate Culinary Team Building that facilitate this social sharing. The options? Try out the “Fusion Cooking Team Building” which divides participants into teams that will create an Italian fusion meal with international ingredients. If this doesn’t strike your appetite (yes, pun intended), look into the “Recipe & Meal Creation Event”. Teams gather their own ingredients to make a meal that will be rated based upon originality, taste, presentation, speed of preparation, cost, and sustainability (bonus!). Not into the cooking idea? Opt for the wine tasting event that provides various samples of reds and whites to participants, which are then randomly resampled by the same group in an attempt to identify the most correctly. Have a different event in mind? Flavor of Italy notes how if that’s the case, simply ask them about it! They are more than happy to accommodate specific interests.

Wine

These options are among the activities offered by Flavor of Italy to foster both team building as well as the enhancement of an equally amiable and professional work ethic. “Getting the job done” is no more important than setting time aside to create relationships with coworkers. In fact, the latter is often necessary for an effective completion of the former.

It’s also vital to recognize that Flavor of Italy promotes and practices culinary responsibility in each of their programs. They state, “Culinary sustainability is an increasingly important part of our lives as the world we live in becomes more global, resources become more scarce, and we face important issues such as recycling of our ever-increasing waste and GMOs.” Despite indulging in some of Italy’s finest, Flavor of Italy’s policies can alleviate your team’s concerns about leaving the “green”.

Check out Flavor of Italy’s blog for some more information and updates!

Travel in 2013

Dotted World MapHappy (Almost) New Year!!!!

We’re finishing up the year 2012 with a sneak peek at the best destinations for travel in 2013. Whether you’re traveling by yourself or with a meeting group, you’ll love these lists of up-and-coming hot spots in the U.S. and around the globe!

First up, courtesy of Lonely Planet, we have the the Top 10 U.S. destinations for 2013. (Some of them may surprise you!)

  1. Louisville, Kentucky
  2. Fairbanks, Alaska
  3. San Juan, Washington
  4. Philadelphia Pennsylvania
  5. American Samoa
  6. Eastern Sierra, California
  7. Northern Maine
  8. Twin Cities, Minnesota
  9. Verde Valley, Arizona
  10. Glacier National Park, Montana

For those looking to venture outside of the U.S. border, Smart Meetings has compiled a great list of international meeting destinations. These spots are equipped to support a wide variety of groups and have been dubbed “meeting-friendly.”

  1. Vienna
  2. Paris
  3. Barcelona
  4. Berlin
  5. Singapore
  6. Madrid
  7. London
  8. Amsterdam
  9. Istanbul
  10. Beijing

Finally, we have a round-up of the top meeting and incentive hotels in the United States from Meetings Net!

  1. The Langham, Chicago
  2. Omni Nashville Hotel
  3. Quad Resort & Casino, Las Vegas
  4. El Encanto, Santa Barbara, California
  5. The Godfrey Hotel, Chicago
  6. Manhattan Park Hyatt
  7. Salamander Resort & Spa, Middleburg, Va.
  8. Andaz Maui at Wailea
  9. Ace Hotel, Los Angeles
  10. Delano Las Vegas at Mandalay Bay, Las Vegas

Have you been to any of these cities? Do you agree with the rankings? We’d love to hear your feedback!

(For more travel updates from A&M Meeting and Incentives, please visit us on Facebook and Twitter!)