The Challenge

Innovate’s approach is to treat each school on an individual basis, allowing Catering Managers the flexibility to create their own recipes. There are few limitations other than set days for a roast dinner, a fish dish and a curry option. Each academic year Innovate hold pupil focus groups across their schools to gain pupils’ feedback on current and future menu offerings. Innovate don’t ever list a product without piloting it with caterers and pupils and if it doesn’t work then they don’t use it. Access to a comprehensive range of quality ingredients and finished products to meet the changing demands of Catering Managers and students across the group is essential. Increasing sales and uptake of lunch and break time food and drink offerings is also an ongoing priority for Innovate.

The Solution

Flexibility and the ability to source new products at the right price point are both key to the successful relationship that exists between Innovate and Creed. Creed uses student and catering managers’ feedback and finds new products and raw ingredients to address demands. Creed also introduce Innovate to many suppliers who offer a wide range of products and ingredients from popular street food style items, hot grab and go options and snacks through to custom made breads and drinks. Innovate also work with Creed’s Executive Development Chef, Rob Owen to create and test recipes and products. New products have helped to replicate concepts available on the high street for a fraction of the price, thus retaining students on-site. Innovate’s business is entirely driven by product availability, and Creed’s online ordering system offers easy access to live stock updates and pricing.

The Feedback

Creed Foodservice has adapted to the way we work. We don’t believe in ‘one size fits all’ but instead we give our professional Catering Managers the freedom to develop new and interesting ideas to meet the needs of their schools. Creed has been proactive in sourcing new products and ideas that fulfill demands, meet compliance requirements and give value for money – Kara Continental Breads and Calder Foods sandwich fillings are good examples of this. We also use their development kitchen as a resource for trying new recipes. In the time we have been working with Creed, average spend per pupil on role (SPPOR) has more than doubled. Our operation is fast paced and ever-changing but we find lines of communication with Creed excellent, enabling every step of the process from ordering through to delivery to be as smooth as it can be. 

Karl Hudson, Director of Food & Product Development