Our latest thought piece from Mary Wedge, which can be read in this months issue of Public Sector Catering on page 30, link below

Since Covid-19 hit, those operating in the care sector and the NHS, have had to work harder than ever to retain service. Anglia Crown, has been on the frontline since the start of pandemic. Business development manager Mary Wedge talks us through the essential role they have played during the crisis.

“As a prepared meal manufacturer working with more than 100 health and social care sites across the UK, we were quickly identified by the Government as an essential service at the start of the pandemic. As the crisis unfolded, we were faced with unprecedented demand for our meals from all markets. In fact the demand for our range of nutritionally balanced and tasty individual and multi portion prepared products outstripped production, with a spike in interest of frozen meals.

The industry was in urgent need of additional food and as an award-winning supplier, we knew we could deliver. We created a Covid-19 response team to spearhead changes in the business and took the decision to immediately invest in our production and staff.

In April we launched an urgent recruitment drive to fill more than 60 newly created positions. We recruited for kitchen production, stores operatives, packing and picking persons, HGV drivers and many more positions. Where possible recruitment was from the food-service industry to help those who had lost their job due to Covid-19. Increasing staff levels meant we could continue to provide full menu options to customers and help support new customers who were in urgent need.

We scaled up our production and increased communication with ingredient suppliers to ensure supply wasn’t affected and our high standards in food chain safety were upheld.

We also provided food to those in an emergency situation, taking on at short notice many new customers who were found themselves without food or staff to deliver a catering operation. Our team was able to mobilise new customers at an unprecedented speed and delivered meals to them across the UK. Additionally, we instigated contactless deliveries and a long list of other measures were put in place to meet the needs of our sector.

A culmination of fast action and a huge shift in thinking has ensured that we could fully support our industry during this difficult period, whilst continuing to deliver on our vision – in driving excellence in patient and care home catering.”

Anglia Crown’s individual and multi-portion meals are available direct. Contact Mary Wedge

This article was run in Public Sector Catering magazine