JD Wetherspoon Plc has ended its relationship with a supplier after the U.K. pub chain was forced to hold a steak night without one key ingredient: steak.
“Russell Hume Ltd. no longer supplies products to JD Wetherspoon,” the chain, which serves an average 200,000 steaks a week, said in a statement.
The meat supplier had told Wetherspoon on Monday January 22 it would be unable to fulfill a scheduled order after a production facility was closed by the Food Standards Agency. It was unfortunate timing for Wetherspoon ahead of its weekly Steak Club the next evening, but the company expects to have sirloin, rump and gammon available for its next steak night on January 30.
“We wish to apologize to our customers for the inconvenience caused to them,” Wetherspoon founder and chairman, Tim Martin, said. “Our decision to stop serving steak from Tuesday, despite limited information from the supplier, was the correct one.”
Fellow publicly traded brewers Greene King Plc and Marston’s Plc, as well as the Jamie’s Italian restaurant chain backed by celebrity chef Jamie Oliver, were also impacted. All three confirmed that they are also using alternative suppliers.
The FSA said on Wednesday January 24 it had stopped Russell Hume from selling meat, citing “serious non-compliance” with food hygiene regulations.
Wetherspoon cited Russell Hume as saying it’s been cooperating with the FSA investigation and that it has an “unblemished record” during 50 years of business. There is no suggestion any product it supplied caused illness, Wetherspoon cited Russell Hume as saying in a January 24 statement. Calls to Russell Hume went unanswered on Friday January 26 and its website registered as temporarily unavailable.
News by Bloomberg, edited by Hospitality Ireland