The Elior Group premium B&I catering brand Arpège and the culinary incubator United Kitchens have forged a partnership for the purposes of developing responsible and original catering. Both players share the same goal to create products and services that are tried and tested with consumers. Together, Arpège and United Kitchens are looking to uncover and promote the virtuous culinary concepts of the future that use raw and seasonal produce, as well as to fight against waste and contribute to insertion.

The mission of United Kitchens, the largest culinary incubator in Europe, is to foster the emergence of brands and new products and services. In Nanterre (92) on the outskirts of Paris, United Kitchens provides 35 start-ups access to a 600m² experimental kitchen where they can test new culinary concepts and develop new consumer usages. This experimental space offers culinary entrepreneurs, restaurants, start-ups, artisans and food-industry players a place where they can exchange their ideas, validate their concepts, become part of a solid network and develop.

"United Kitchens wanted to collaborate with Arpège to go further in the support of the start-ups by offering them a new opportunity to develop and market their catering solutions. This partnership is also key to promoting our shared vision of contract catering in order to step up the culinary transition towards sustainable models," explained the Director of United Kitchens, Armelle Delaage.

Within the context of this partnership, Arpège will provide financial support and ensure sustainable and regular collaboration between its teams and the incubator's start-ups:

  • Arpège will participate in selecting the incubator’s start-ups and assisting in their development by providing consulting and coaching. United Kitchens’ beneficiary start-ups are selected for their innovative and responsible culinary approach: use of healthy, raw and seasonal produce, the fight against waste and contribution to insertion.
  • Selected start-ups will be able to test their innovations in Arpège restaurants. This will enable the start-ups to carry out in situ assessments of the viability of their business models, products and services, and thus foster their development and the distribution of their innovations.
  • Arpège will be able to preview United Kitchens' new members and concepts that could subsequently be presented to its clients and guests during educational workshops

"As our guests are acquainted with the latest trends in culinary concepts and usages we must provide them catering solutions that are modern and innovative. Our partnership with United Kitchens will enable us to explore new culinary avenues. By giving start-ups access to our network and restaurants, we can offer them a playing field as well as a practical, in situ testing ground for them to create concrete projects," explained Frédéric Lepape, CEO of Arpège.

This partnership is in line with the global innovation strategy of Elior Group entitled Life4, the objective of which is to develop synergies between the Group and foodtech players. This pragmatic approach is based on experimentation and designed to produce concrete results that serve quality and innovation. Via its partnerships with such incubators as Reimagine Food, SmartFood Paris and United Kitchens, Elior Group is discovering, supporting and promoting not only talents, but also innovations, be they technological and culinary as well as those related to new offerings and new markets.