PROFESSOR Alfonso John Forte was presented with his OBE by the Queen at at Buckingham Palace last week.
The Old Victorian received the accolade, which was announced in the New Year’s Honours List, for services to the food industry.
‘It was the most memorable day of my life and an experience that will remain firmly fixed in my head until my dying day,’ he said.
Now aged 70, Mr Forte studied modern languages after leaving school and in 1964 went to work with his uncle, the late Luigi Forte, in the family catering firm, the Charles Forte Company.
He worked at the London-based company until 1996. Latterly as group technical director, he was responsible for food safety and hygiene. Many of his initiatives were adopted as standard across the hospitality industry in the UK and throughout Europe.
The Institute of Hospitality made him a fellow and awarded him honorary life membership for his outstanding contribution to the industry.
Soon afterwards, he was appointed honorary professor at the school of Leisure, Hospitality and Food Management at the University of Salford.
Mr Forte lectured for many years and was invited to join the Food Standards Agency to help to develop new standards for food hygiene and safety.
He said that he was delighted to have his work recognised in this way.