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Workers go Christmas crackers

19 December 2005

Christmas really does send workers crackers, according to new research by contract caterer Avenance which found that the festive season cost the UK £8b in reduced output.

The survey by Canvasse Opinion found that "Festive Fizzle-out" affected nearly half the work-force from 18 December, with women suffering the most.

Workers felt burned-out and unmotivated because they were stressed over Christmas preparations. They also admitted to eating and drinking too much rich fare at work-related celebrations.

Sixty percent of staff blamed over-indulgence for their reduced output.

Mike Audis, chief executive of Elior UK, claimed: "These results show the role of food and drink in the workplace is now more than ever becoming crucial for the health and well-being of employees and their productivity levels."

Simple ways that employers can nurse staff through the final furlong of the year include providing fresh fruit and drinking water, healthier options in the workplace restaurant, and subsidised breakfasts to start the day, suggested Elior.

by Angela Frewin

Fizzle-out Food Facts

  • 90% of employees will attend at least four Christmas parties with an average calorie count of 2,000 calories per meal
  • 27% will drink more than one bottle of wine with each work-related Christmas lunch
  • 10% blame ensuing hangovers for their reduced output
  • 10% have been ill over the holiday thanks to pre-Christmas over-indulgence
  • 23% lack the time to eat healthily during December

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