Mayflower Care Home

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Oodles of Spoodles!

There was a lot of excitement in all three dining rooms at Mayflower yesterday, thanks to the launch of Caterplus’ new initiative that provides consistent and nutritionally balanced portion control using a special set of utensils.

The colour-coded utensil range includes several different sizes of spoodle – a cross between a spoon and a ladle – as well as ladles, scoops and tongs. Each spoodle, ladle and scoop serves up a precise amount of a particular food, with different ones used for soups, stews, custard, mashed potato, ice cream, fruit salad and jelly. Tongs and fish slices are used for food, such as fish and broccoli, that cannot properly be dished up using a spoon.

So now, busy care staff can simply serve out a portion of any given food without worrying if it is too much or too little. And, as presentation improves, the food appears more appetizing to residents.

“It’s all about weight maintenance,” says our Home Manager Nicola Bundock, a former hospital nutrition lead. “Elderly residents, especially those with dementia, lose weight and muscle mass. Many are also very active and burn a lot of calories. They therefore need food that’s high in fat and energy to maintain their weight.”

Here at Mayflower, we try hard to ensure that residents get adequate and balanced nutrition each day. Every morning, a selection of savoury snacks such as sausage rolls, quiche slices, egg bites and cheese straws are set out in special containers called Grazeboxes in the dining room or the lounge – depending on residents’ whereabouts – with cakes and sweet treats in the afternoon. Pureed options are also available.

“Just because a resident can’t swallow doesn’t mean they can’t have a cake. They can, but it’s just in a slightly different format,” says Nicola. “This is about offering truly person-centred care, knowing the individual’s requirements and ensuring that each gets the right nutritional balance for them each day.”

Caterplus’ Marie Ardley-Batt adds: “A resident’s eating experience should be as good as it can be, and everyone has their own needs. We believe that our spoodles and Grazeboxes are well ahead of the trend regarding people’s dietary needs and expectations.”

The launch of the new utensils here in Mayflower, together with the Grazeboxes, is a company-wide drive to improve dementia care knowledge and build best practice across the organization.