The Michelin Group has condemned all acts of aggression and harassment in hospitality but stopped short of saying that it would remove accolades from businesses where abuse is proven.
A statement from the group said, “One of the Michelin Group’s five core values is respect for people, and we take that very seriously. We firmly condemn all acts of aggression and harassment in the kitchen or outside it, which damage people’s lives, the entire profession and its image.
“The Michelin star is awarded for the quality and consistency of the food offered to customers. That is where our independent expertise lies. Our core focus and the way we work, based on anonymous visits as a normal diner, do not allow us to form a view of the culture and human resources approach of thousands of individual businesses. As such we must assume innocence until proven otherwise by legal authorities.”
Removing awards from hospitality businesses where abuse is proven would have a ‘seismic impact’ on working conditions in the sector, Brian McElderry of union Unichef has said. He added that he was not asking associations such as Michelin and the AA to police the industry and behaviour in kitchens, but to have an ethical aspect to their accreditation.
The call followed recent accusations of bullying and harassment within the Kitchin Group, which led to two members of staff being suspended. Allegations of a ‘toxic culture’ have also been levelled at BrewDog.