Running a successful catering, events, or hospitality business is a challenging task in a highly competitive industry. With constantly conflicting priorities, picky clients, stressed hosts, and rising costs, it can feel like a never-ending juggling act.
For many business owners and managers in this field, the dream of a smoothly-running operation is elusive. But finding a dependable and cost-effective equipment supplier can ease some of the most common pain points.
Catering and events management involves numerous moving parts, and working with a limited number of trusted suppliers can greatly reduce the time and effort spent on these tasks.
Selecting the right equipment supplier is crucial. It is ideal to establish a long-term partnership with a provider who can accommodate the changing needs of your business as it evolves.
Stephensons Catering Equipment, based in the UK, is a leading provider of catering equipment for the hospitality industry. With over 150 years of experience and a commitment to quality, Stephensons can help with many of the challenges faced by owners and managers as they look to grow their catering and restaurant operations.
Stephensons Catering Supplies has an impressive range of products related to food, beverages and restaurant equipment. From kitchen appliances and tableware, to catering disposables and janitorial supplies, the range is exhaustive.
We have put together this guide to tell you everything you need to know about the products and services they offer, and how to order them.
What Is Stephensons Catering?
Stephensons Catering Supplies is a family run business based in Stockport, England, in its fifth generation. Since 1868 they have been supporting the catering industry with supplies and equipment.
Stephensons now have a cash and carry showroom, a sales team, and a fleet of delivery vans to ensure that their customers receive the best possible service and products.
Stephensons Catering Supplies has a client portfolio of many pubs, restaurants and hotels in the private sector as well as various establishments in the private sector.
They offer essential products and innovative solutions at competitive prices, and unbeatable customer service which keeps their clients returning time after time.
The rich history of the company is a point of interest for many customers. It began as a stall on Salford’s Flat Iron Market in the 1860’s, selling china and pottery from Stoke On Trent.
In 1868, Henry George Stephenson used the capital he had built up from the stall to become the first tenant in the newly built Barton arcade in Manchester. Over 150 years later, Stephensons are still successful, and have expanded into various services.
Are you interested in offering Indian dishes at your next event? Take a look at our article on Jolly Catering
Why Choose Stephensons Catering?
There are many reasons why you might choose to use Stephensons.
Firstly, they have an easy to navigate website. This online snapshot of Stephensons carries detailed information about the business and their services, along with prices and ordering and delivery details.
Stephensons Catering offers free delivery to most UK locations on orders over £70 pounds.
Delivery is usually within 2 working days of placing an order, but if you need something urgently you can call the customer service team and see if you are able to receive your order sooner.
You can also place orders for international shipping if they are over a certain amount.
Certain customers are able to set up credit accounts with Stephensons which can be very helpful if you have your own business. You can order online using your credit account and have the goods delivered.
Do you have a wake to cater for? See our post on Catering Food Ideas for Funerals.
There is also a cash and carry showroom at the stockport store where you can have a look at lots of the different products on offer, and you can pick up your click and collect orders.
Stephensons offer their goods at trade prices and all VAT is calculated at the checkout both online and in store. However, you don’t have to run a business to make the most of these prices – they also accept orders and custom from the general public.
As well as an impressive range of products, there are other services that Stephensons offer. They can try and source products for you if it is something that they do not keep in stock – just speak to the customer service team.
They also offer customisation on certain products like crockery, glassware, napkins, coasters and other items. These can be even customised with your own logo.
If you are looking for catering supplies company to compare with Stephensons, see our review of Star Catering
So, what is actually on offer from Stephensons? Here are some examples of the categories of product on offer and what items you can find in each category.
Whilst Stephensons offer a huge amount of choice, they are also happy to try and source a product for you if it is something that they don’t usually offer.
You can choose from a range of:
- Christmas crackers
- Festive napkins and tablecloths
- Christmas partyware
- Christmas coffee cups and lids
- Machines and accessories for hot drinks
- Christmas candles and candle holders
For some great Christmas Dessert recipes, see here.
Food & Drink Packaging
There is a wide range of food packaging on offer:
- Takeaway containers – pizza boxes, fish and chip boxes, burger boxes, noodle boxes, aluminum containers
- Street Food packaging – meal boxes to go, containers, different designs
- Sandwich shop containers – sandwich bags, food bags, soup containers, salad containers
- Takeaway labeling – tamper proof labels, dietary requirement labels
- Delivery and carrier bags – Delivery bags, takeaway bags, paper bags, plastic bags
- Disposable plates and cutlery – plates, bowls, cutlery, skewers, food platters, pots, tongs
- Vacuum sealers and packaging machines
- Takeaway beer and cocktail carriers
- Takeaway coffee cups
A vacuum sealer is an incredibly handy appliance to have in your kitchen. It makes storing all kinds of food stuffs so easy. And if you like to dabble in sous vide cooking, it’s a must. For more information and prices, see here.
There are different options for crockery depending on budget and requirements:
- Plates – side plates, dinner plates, dessert plates, pizza plates, pasta plates, starter plates
- Milk jugs
- Fine china
- Budget crockery
Buzz Catering are another respected catering supplies company which can provide you with everything from serving platters to food warmers.
All of your cutlery needs will be met by the extensive range:
- Premium cutlery
- Economy cutlery
- Children’s cutlery
- Service cutlery
- Seafood cutlery
- Disposable cutlery
- Colored plastic cutlery
- Steak knives
- Cheese knives
- Pizza cutlery
- Latte spoons
- Adapted cutlery
- Cutlery holders and storage
- Specialist cutlery – escargot, pastry forks, butter knives, sugar tongs
Front Of House
However you like to present the front of house, Stephensons has what you need:
- Food Presentation – baskets, buckets, trays, boards
- Cake – Cake stands, labels, Afternoon Tea stands, utensils
- Condiments and dips – salt and pepper shakers, salt and pepper mills, sauce jugs and gravy boats, ramekins and dip pots
- Buffet and food display – trolleys, trays, cheese display, cake service, breakfast service, hot and cold beverage holders
- Candles and candle holders
- Signage and displays
- Tea and coffee service
Check out our post on Catering Food Ideas For Graduation Parties
Restaurants and bars need all sorts of glassware:
- Beer glasses
- Wine glasses
- Gin and tonic glasses
- Champagne glasses
- Cocktail glasses
- Shot glasses
- Sherry, port and liquor glasses
- Brandy and whiskey tasting glasses
- Coffee glasses
- Sundae glasses
- Colored glassware
- Plastic glasses
- Reusable plastic glasses
- Jugs, carafes, bottles and decanters
- Glassware storage and care
It keeps a lot of products to keep a bar up and running and Stephensons has everything that you will need:
- Straws and stirrers
- Drink decorations
- Cocktail napkins
- Measures and pourers
- Openers and resealers
- Cocktail shakers
- Mixing glasses
- Mixing spoons
- Cocktail syrups
- Cocktail mixers
- Garnish preparation – chopping boards, knives and wedges, fruit zesters, fruit squeezers, condiment dispenser, fruit baskets
- Ice buckets and accessories
- Wine coolers and buckets
- Bottle skips
- Bar mats
- Drip trays
- Signage and displays
- Bar games
- Cellar equipment
Kingswood Catering specialises in creating healthy meals, sensitive to a range of dietary requirements, especially for the school dinner market.
Stephensons can offer everything you need to run a kitchen:
- Utensils – BBQ tools, scoops, slicers, corers, ballers
- Chef’s knives and accessories
- Food preparation – boards, graters, mincers, cutters, chippers
- Storage containers and vacuum sealers
- Pastry and bakeware
- Pizza equipment and air fryers
- Appliances – cooking, sous vide and refrigeration, etc
- Food Labels
- Ovens and mitts
- Kitchen disposables – cling film, foil, greaseproof paper etc
- Cookware – pots, pans, trays etc
If you love to BBQ, then a Meat Thermometer is an essential piece of kitchen equipment. In fact, a good thermometer is pretty important no matter what or where you are cooking. For more information and prices, click here.
Cleaning & Hygiene
If you run a business that revolves around food, you will need to do a lot of cleaning. Stephensons have got you covered:
- Paper hygiene – toilet roll, blue roll, napkins, hand towels
- Cleaning chemicals – furniture care, bar cleaning, dishwashing, glass cleaning etc
- Hand hygiene – soap, alcohol gel, dispensers
- Wipes and sprays
- Cloths and sponges
- Gloves and workwear
- Mops and buckets
- Hotel toiletries
- Waste management
- Cleaning appliances – vacuum cleaners, buffing machines etc
Health And Safety
Health and safety is an important part of any business, and this category of products has what you will need:
- Signage – no smoking, no dogs, caution, fire safety
- Posters – Health and safety posters for kitchens and work areas
- Food allergen signs and labels
- Recycling signage
- First aid kits
- Queue management
For sandwich platters, tasty wraps and, of course, subs, it’s hard to go past Subway Catering
The last category is clothing, which you might be surprised at how useful it can be:
- Chef jackets
- Chef trousers
- Catering aprons
- Front of house shirts
- Polo shirts
- Waistcoats and ties
- Hats and hair nets
- Shoes and clogs
- Serving cloths and wait staff gloves
- Lab coats
- High visibility clothing
How To Order?
It is really easy to order online from Stephensons. Any order over £70 has free delivery to mainland England, Wales and Scotland. For orders below this amount, delivery costs £7. I
f you have a credit account with Stephensons you are still able to order online- you just need to register the account on the website first.
Once you have done this, any online orders you place will adhere to the prices you have agreed with Stephensons as part of your credit account.
You can also order from Stephensons and have your goods shipped overseas, both inside and outside of the EU. You must place a minimum order of £500 excluding VAT, and the shopping costs will need to be calculated individually per order.
In addition, there is a click and collect option which allows you to pick up your goods from the stockport store. This is the site of the cash and carry showroom.
Stephensons is a family run business with a rich history connected to Stockport and Greater Manchester. They have a fantastic range of products with an efficient delivery service within the United Kingdom.
They also offer overseas shipping on orders over a certain amount. Their products are competitively priced which is ideal for people who run their own business.
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