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Contract catering for schools. What are the benefits of outsourcing your school’s catering?

We’ve seen some of the steepest education cuts since the 1970s, which makes balancing the books increasingly difficult for schools. Standards are higher than ever and schools are having to work much harder to save money.  

The introduction of the School Food Plan  and universal free school meals means school kitchens are under pressure to provide healthy, nutritious meals within the government set allowance of £2.30 per child.

We agree it’s a much-needed initiative that benefits children but the reality of delivering it within schools, cost-effectively, is challenging.

Outsourcing to an independent catering company can relieve the pressure and make significant savings for your school. It allows you to save on cost without compromising on standards. 

How does outsourcing catering work?

You have two options:

  • fresh daily deliveries to your school (cooked off-site)
  • on-site catering cooked in your own school kitchen by an external catering company.

What are the MAIN benefits?

Maximise revenue and control costs

You can benefit from the supplier’s economies of scale and get the best price for the service. Outsourcing brings financial certainty when you agree an amount and cap spending.

Specialist support

Using their expert knowledge, your caterer can help you understand the impact of the compulsory Schools Food Plan  and OFSTED’s new requirements to provide a healthy lifestyle for children.

Transfer legal responsibilities

Staffing responsibilities can pass to the supplier if you choose on-site catering facilities. They can TUPE existing employees (taking over the management of the staff) to their own workforce. Plus, regulations and compliance, including health and safety legislation, allergen information, and responsibility for food labelling, falls to the catering company, saving the school time and stress.

Continuity of service

The contractor can use relief staff to cover sickness or other absences at short notice so there’s less work and responsibility for the school.

What CAN contract catering provider Fresha offer your school?

Fresha wants children to be able to enjoy a nutritious, tasty school lunch every day. A well-fed child, enjoying their food, is a happy child more eager to learn. We are passionate about raising a healthier generation of children and work hard to meet the rigorous requirements of the School Food Plan  

Fresha offers

  1. Freshly cooked, locally-sourced school lunches that are nutritionally balanced and healthy without compromising on taste or presentation. We meet specific nutritional needs with flair and ingenuity.
  2. A stringent and diligent approach to managing budgets, health and safety, recruitment and accounting procedures.
  3. A proven track record in delivering commercial solutions for schools to maximise opportunities.
  4. Nourishing meals prepared daily, either in the school kitchen or in our own Exeter kitchens, which meet the Government's school food standards.
  5. A close partnership with our schools, designing outstanding menus together. 

What happens next?

If you decide to contract out your catering provision, the process is simple.

  • Put together a document with clear specification and expectations of the service you require. This can then be tendered out to a few caterers.
  • Review the replies, then invite the caterers in for a Q&A and food sampling. This is a great opportunity to meet the team who will run the contract for you.
  • Make your choice.
  • The hard work is over. The school gives its current caterer notice, introduces the new caterer to the old, leaving the new caterer to take care of TUPE and get ready for day one of making food!

Want to find out more?

Fresha guides you through every step of changing your set up, using our experience and expertise of contract catering for schools.

We partner with schools giving you autonomy and flexibility over menus and special events. We will listen to you, guide you, make it easy and stress-free, and create a happy dining experience for your school.

If you would like to find out more about outsourcing your school’s catering, please contact us for an informal chat on 01392 447701