Children enjoy a healthy school lunch. Credit: Jon Goldberg / Children's Food Campaign

News Food Poverty

Southwark council have approved a new procurement framework to help schools source and buy high quality healthy food, prioritising local businesses and better value for money.

On 17 June 2024, Southwark council pledged to develop a new framework that will transform how schools can source and pay for food services with a total estimated value of £4m. The framework will make it easier for schools to serve good quality, nutritious lunches that support students’ health and learning, by providing a system that gives schools more control over their catering contracts and the quality of food they are purchasing.

The new framework will:

  • simplify schools’ route to markets and suppliers
  • reduce the administrative burden on schools when going out to tender for food services
  • uphold high meal standards
  • raise wages and morale in school kitchens
  • improve access to locally-sourced produce and services from smaller businesses and community organisations

The framework will be available to all schools and academies in Southwark. This project is part of the council’s wider school meals transformation programme which launched in December 2021.

A bespoke school food procurement framework will give the council greater control over the sustainability of the food served to children in Southwark. Specifically, it will allow the council to specify contracts which meet London’s Food Purchasing Commitment and Southwark Sustainable Food Strategy requirements, including: supporting local sustainable caterers, suppliers and manufacturers; using council buying power to champion sustainable food; making it easier for local sustainable food businesses to access the school food market; reducing carbon emissions and food waste in line with local, national and international targets and offering ‘climate friendly’ school lunch menus.

News story on Southwark Council's website

Full School Food Procurement Framework

Published Thursday 20 June 2024

Food Poverty: Millions of people in the UK struggle to get enough to eat. We’re working to change that through people-powered projects and campaigns that tackle the root causes of food poverty and ensure everyone has dignified access to healthy, affordable food.

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