Andy Kemp calls for increased government action on school meals

16 September 2022 by
Andy Kemp calls for increased government action on school meals

Andy Kemp, Bidfood's sales and marketing director and a champion of the school meals service, has once again called for increased government action in financial support given to the industry amidst soaring food inflation costs.

For the third time this year Andy Kemp has written to several MPs, including the new prime minister Liz Truss, highlighting increased concerns about the rising inflation and the lack of government response.

He has highlighted that since his last report, sent back in February 2022, inflationary costs have risen further. For example, since 2015 when Universal Infant Free School Meal (UIFSM) Funding began, the National Living Wage has increased by 41.8%, with the Consumer Price Index rising by 20.01%, CPI Food by 12.21% and ROI for Food & Catering by 17.1%. This compares to UIFSM Funding which has increased over this time by just 11p or 4.8% to £2.41.

In a letter accompanying a paper titled ‘Government Funding of the Provision of School Meals in State Schools in England', he asks the government to thoroughly consider the effects of "inaction" that will affect and hinder the learning of state school children if government funding is not increased.

He said: "I am thankful of a change in government as the time has come where action must be taken. It is a sad fact that in 2022 there are many children whose only hot meal is the one provided at school and there is no doubt that without extra funding the school meals service is going to have difficulty to sustain its high values and service to the children.

"Should the increases the industry suggests be recognised the funding would be closer to £2.98 per meal at the lower end and £3.01 at the CPI level of which Government measures most indices."

Shutterstock image: 1090719347

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