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Evaluation of a Pilot Scheme to Encourage Local Suppliers to Supply Food to Schools

Descriptionresearch findings on local food to schools
Official Print Publication Date
Website Publication DateAugust 11, 2006


Chris Bowden, Mark Holmes, and Hazel Mackenzie, ADASUK Ltd.
ISBN 0 7559 1393 0 (Web only publication)
This document is also available in pdf format (1.6mb)


Executive Summary
Evaluation of the Pilot Scheme to Encourage Local Suppliers to Respond to Advertised Requirements for the Supply of Local and Local Organic Food to Schools in East Ayrshire
Establishing the Views of Children/Parents on the Changes to the School Meals Service Resulting From the Pilot Scheme
Assessing the Degree to Which the Findings Can Be Generalised to Other Local Authorities

Chapter One Introduction
Purpose of this Evaluation
Local Area Context
Pilot Background
Summary of Food Supply to Schools and Evaluation Overview
Pilot Inception, Development and Implementation
Research Approach
Arrangement of this Report

Chapter Two Survey of Local Food Producers in Ayrshire
The Survey of Food Producers
Characteristics of the Local Food Companies Surveyed
Types of Food Produced, and Where Sold
Support for Producers' Businesses
Distribution of Produce to Customers
Awareness of and Involvement in Tendering
Outcome of the Tendering Process
Interest in Supplying Ingredients for School Meals
Previous Tendering and Attitudes to Future Tendering
Potential for Tendering to Ayrshire Schools in the Future

Chapter Three Results of Surveys of Catering Managers and Head Teachers
Survey Approach
Views from the Schools Regarding Local Supply
Views from School of Impact at School
Comparisons Between Comments Made in the Pre- and Post- Local Sourcing Pilot Stages
Suggestions From Staff

Chapter Four Views of Council Officers in East Ayrshire
Background and Method
Planning of the Pilot Scheme
The Tendering Process
Effect of the Scheme
Monitoring and Analysis
Moving the Scheme Forward
Recommending the Scheme to Other Councils/ Extending the Scheme

Chapter Five Survey of Schoolchildren and their Parents
Survey Approach
Parents' Survey Results
Children's Survey Results

Chapter Six Generalisation of Results to Other Local Authorities in Scotland
Background and Method
Desk Research
Survey Research

Chapter Seven Conclusions and Recommendations

Appendix 1: Research Approach
Producers Survey
Interviews With Catering Managers and Head Teachers at the Schools in the Pilot Scheme
Interviews With Council officers
Research Amongst Other Local Authorities in Scotland
Interviews With School Children and Parents
Appendix 2: Questionnaires
Appendix 3: Tables of Data and Responses from Other Local Authorities
Appendix 4: Verbatim Comments Collected During Survey Work
Appendix 5: Findings of Desk Research
Appendix 6: The Four-Weekly Menu Used in East Ayrshire Council's Local Food in Primary Schools Initiative

List of tables
Table 1.1: Evolution of pilot scheme
Table 1.2: Tendering process
Table 1.3: Suppliers to the pilot scheme
Table 2.1: Details of types of food produced
Table 2.2: Main type of outlet for sales
Table 4.1: Information captured daily for monitoring of ingredient amounts and costs
Table 4.2: Prices for commodities used in East Ayrshire primary school dinners between 22 May and 5 June 2006
Table A1: School meal costs
Table A2: Perceived barriers to implementing East Ayrshire Council's approach
Table A3: Further information required on East Ayrshire pilot
Table A4: Urban vs Rural classification
Table A5: Number of Publicly funded schools by Local Authority in 2004
Table A6: Number of pupils in each local authority by rural/ urban type
Table A6: Number of pupils in each local authority by rural/ urban type
Table A7: Percentage of pupils in each Local Authority taking a meal (free or paid for) by Urban-Rural Classification
Table A8: Number and percentage of pupils taking school meals (free or purchased), January 2005

List of figures
Figure 1.1: Summary of food supply to primary schools and evaluation overview
Figure 2.1: Where is most of produce sold?
Figure 2.2: Transport of produce to customers
Figure 2.3: Awareness of the July 2005 tender notice
Figure 2.4: Level of interest in supplying ingredients for school meals
Figure 2.5: Problems faced in supplying ingredients for school meals
Figure 2.6: What puts you off submitting more tenders?
Figure 2.7: Incentives to supply produce to Ayrshire schools
Figure 2.8: Barriers to supply produce to Ayrshire schools
Figure 5.1: How many days per week do children have school dinners?
Figure 5.2: Have you had the chance to taste the 'Healthier' school dinners?
Figure 5.3: Does your child's school use healthy food for their dinners?
Figure 5.4: Parents' opinions on whether Local Food brings certain benefits
Figure 5.5: Parents' views on the importance of Local Food and Organic Food
Figure 5.6: Food that children would like more of for their School Dinners
Figure 5.7: Processed or fresh food
Figure 5.8: Children's views on the provenance of school dinners
Figure 5.9: Children's opinions of school dinners