Monday, September 15 10:30AM—11:30AMSustainability: Beyond the Plate Business Seminar
BiographyLaurel Cudden, the Director of Food Safety and Risk Assessment, brings to B.R. Guest an extensive background in public health and quality assurance control. While the chefs get all the glory for making the food taste great, Laurel has two very important jobs: ensuring that the food is safe to eat, and that the multi-concept national restaurant group is being as eco-conscious as possible.
After graduating college with a B.S. in Public Health, Cudden worked for the Ocean County Department of Health in New Jersey. She left the health department to gain restaurant operations experience with the Omni Hotel in Albany, NY. In 1995 Laurel came to NYC to join Food Sanitation Consultant Service, Inc. as a sanitation consultant to food service operations in the New York tri-state area.
Cudden first joined B.R. Guest to help open Ocean Grill in 1997, and then stayed on as a manager. She left to spend three years with Starbucks as Field Quality Assurance Manager, returning to B.R. Guest in July 2001 to develop an internal food safety and accident prevention program for the company’s 14 restaurants and corporate commissary. Through this customized program, she implements HACCP-based inspections that monitor corporate standards and ensure employee and customer safety on a daily basis. Additionally, she trains staff and management to reinforce food safety principles and practices.
Cudden partnered with Corporate Executive Chef Chris Giarraputo to help B.R. Guest Restaurants reduce its environmental footprint and increase sustainable practices; through this endeavor, B.R. Guest Restaurants became the first national multi-concept restaurant group to be certified green by the Green Restaurant Association.