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Over the last three years, 15Hatfields has been working to become the UK’s first venue to be entirely palm oil free. We’re delighted to announce that we're one step closer, having hosted our first 100% palm oil free event!

The awards dinner was created for Convenzis Education. We welcomed 150 guests to our venue for the National MAT Awards 2023 which celebrated the achievements of multi-academy trusts. Read more about our first palm oil free event in Event Planner News, Conference News and PA Life.

Our mission to become palm oil free, is a pivotal part of our commitment to UN Sustainable Development Goals 12. Responsible consumption and production and 13. Climate action. “As we take a holistic view and drilled down further into the impacts of our business, we were keen to reduce our impact on deforestation and global warming, so eradicating palm oil was the next obvious step after our huge sustainable successes in other areas,” explained Warren Campbell, General Manager of 15Hatfields.

"However, this is no mean feat as it is literally astounding and quite an education when you discover how many products contain palm oil in its many, many guises. It can be found in so many foods, beverages, cleaning products and consumables, so auditing and securing palm oil free alternatives is a mammoth undertaking. There are also additional challenges due to current labelling changes by the UK Food Standards Agency caused by the conflict in Ukraine.”

Working in partnership with Boulevard Events, the delicious menu created by chefs Dan Maher and Kate Bassett, featured a variety of canapés and a three-course meal including smoked goat’s cheese tart, cider-glazed pork belly, portobello mushroom and spinach wellington, rich chocolate brownie and more.

Creating a menu that is 100% palm oil free, involves placing every ingredient under the spotlight. “The biggest obstacle was ensuring every product we purchased did not contain palm oil,” said Chelsea Liddard, Event Manager at Boulevard Events. “The tartlet cases for the smoked goats cheese tart canapé, for example, are usually a bought in product which we discovered had palm oil in it. So, our chefs made them from scratch instead to guarantee they were palm oil free.”

Matt McDermott, Director at Convenzis Education, said: “We are always impressed with 15Hatfields’ innovative approach and commitment to sustainability, so were suitably impressed when they suggested that the National MAT Awards should be completely palm oil free, and were extremely pleased with the result. The 15Hatfields’ team always go above and beyond to ensure our attendees have a memorable and first-class evening. We also use the venue regularly for conferences and the team, on top of a great accessible venue, are what keeps us coming back."

Warren added: “We hope that by shining a spotlight on the palm oil problem and being transparent in our approach, we can ultimately educate, de-myth, and create a groundswell of change not only in the way the sector operates, but among supply chains. We are extremely grateful that Boulevard Events has taken on the mantle and is willing to support our endeavours to continually innovate and offer 100% palm oil free catered events such as award ceremonies and private dinners at our venue.”

We can create the perfect menu whatever the occasion, whether you're hosting an awards ceremony for 180 guests, canapé reception, networking event, or private dining experience for 12. Learn more about the 15Hatfields fine dining experience and explore our event catering sample menus of award-winning canapés and dishes.