Who owns Chartwells catering company?

CHARTWELLS catering company has come under the spotlight after the Government hired the company to help distribute free schools meals.

But parents are up in arms over the quality and quantity of the food provided, which is the result of footballer Marcus Rashford campaigning for food parcels for underprivileged children.


Who owns Chartwells catering company?

Chartwells is owned by global food distribution services, Compass Group.

The world's largest caterer the Compass Group food service company, working across 45 countries and employing 600,000 people.

Compass Group has its origins in a company which was founded by Jack Bateman in 1941 as Factory Canteens Limited and which subsequently became known as Bateman Catering.

Bateman Catering and Midland Catering were acquired by conglomerate Grand Metropolitan in 1967 and 1968 respectively and a management buy-out from Grand Metropolitan followed in 1987 when the Compass Group was formed

What is Chartwells?

Chartwells is a private catering company and the education catering arm of food service.

The group has been enlisted to help the Government provide free school meals to underprivileged children after Marcus Rashford lobbied the Government.

Chartwells are one of several private companies the government has outsourced provision of free meals to.

But the company came under fire hen one disgruntled parent shared a picture of the food provisions parcel supplied by Government.

Why are Chartwells under fire over the free school meals picture?

Chartwells have been scrutinised after one mother posted a picture of her weekly food parcel on social media.

Families being giventhe "degrading" food parcels as part of the Government's free school meals programme are being treated "like dirt, according to one mother taking steps to pawn her jewellery to pay for meals.

Elaine Stacey, 41, from Reading, was given a food parcel "worth £3" containing a loaf of bread, weighed-out pasta in a sandwich bag, three jelly pots and a jar of Dolmio sauce to feed her 17-year-old son for one week.

During the previous lockdown, she was given £15 food vouchers – the amount confirmed for each child in a family.

What have Chartwells said about the free school meals picture?

A Chartwells spokesperson said: "We have had time to investigate the picture circulated on Twitter.

"For clarity this shows five days of free school lunches (not ten days) and the charge for food, packing and distribution was actually £10.50 and not £30 as suggested.

"However, in our efforts to provide thousands of food parcels a week at extremely short notice we are very sorry the quantity has fallen short in this instance."

The Prime Minister's official spokesman told a Westminster briefing: "We're aware of those images circulating on social media, and it is clear that the contents of those food parcels are completely unacceptable.

"The Department for Education is looking into this urgently and the minister for children, Vicky Ford, is speaking to the company responsible and they will be making it clear that boxes like this should not be given to families."

Caterlink managing director Neil Fuller said: "All children require nutritious food to support their learning, whilst at school, or at home.

"We have listened to feedback from parents and pupils, and in some cases it is clear our parcels have fallen short.

"We have immediately reviewed our current food parcels, enhancing the contents. These enhancements have been funded by our organisation's charitable foundation, WSH Foundation.

"The enhanced parcels will be prepared by a site-based catering team and will be available for distribution in the coming days."

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