Pabulum reports strong financial performance

Pabulum celebrates record year after delivering growth and investing in the business I’m pleased to report that Pabulum has delivered a strong financial performance for 2014/2015, with turnover exceeding £23 million, reflecting the strength of our catering proposition, being a fresh food company that will not compromise on its values of Passion, Innovation, Sensation and Education.
Nelson Williams


The principal drivers of growth have been our commitment to investing in People, IT, and Innovation. These investments have helped secure new business sales of £2.4 million, working only in schools and colleges that are either good or outstanding according to Ofsted. Each of these schools also has its own excellent leadership team that supports Pabulum’s commitment to providing a fresh food culture. It’s great to be working with so many fantastic schools and colleges who share our passion and values.


Under a strong Board of Directors and Leadership Team Pabulum is proudly clear of its direction. We are completely dedicated to education catering and only work in this market, where we have a well-defined business model. As part of this direction, it’s our pledge to deliver a consistent, high-quality service across the business that also represents excellent value for money.

Under the leadership of the Operations Director, our Operations Team has evolved into a unique structure which has ensured compliance of brand, a clearly defined and consistent offer and truly fresh food every day. Naturally, we are keen for this success to continue into the new school year and have implemented a ‘Continuous Improvement Plan’ to ensure performance is measured and documented. This process will help to ensure we retain existing contracts and achieve organic growth.

Pabulum has also started on the journey towards becoming an Employer of Choice, which we firmly believe will help underpin sustainable growth in the future.


Continuing with Pabulum’s supplier partner approach, this year saw the development of the “I Love Coffee” brand designed for adult students. I’m delighted to report that this initiative has been a huge success and has already proved to be in high demand, with ten schools recently installing the brand.


Provenance, as always, is a key priority for Pabulum and we have continued to support British farmers. I’m proud to say that we now purchase 75% British produce to use in our freshly prepared school meals.

Pabulum also remains committed to supporting Red Balloon, a cause we feel very strongly about. As Pabulum’s adopted charity, the Red Balloon Learner Centre in Reading received £14k in funding last year, thanks to the efforts and initiatives of Pabulum staff. The charity, which helps children who are unable to go to school because they have been severely bullied, suffered a trauma or abuse, will continue to be the focus of our fundraising efforts

Ready for new challenges

It’s fair to say that the period to April 2016 will present many new challenges for Pabulum. As a business, we have all worked incredibly hard to ensure we’re prepared and that there is adequate resource is in place. New challenges for us to face include Key Stage 2 children moving from free to paid meals, the implementation of the new national Living Wage and Ofsted’s new fifth strand - the personal health and well-being of students. We recognise each of these challenges individually and have not shied away from meeting these; in fact we’ve prioritised them and readied the business for this period. Our aim is to meet and exceed the required standards, whilst remaining true to our commitment to a fresh food culture within schools.

The new school year

I’m proud to report that Pabulum has already secured contract awards for the new period of £3.2m in full year turnover. As a business we remain confident that the growth forecast for the period ending April 2016 will be achieved, along with organic growth over the next five years. In summary, we now have a sustainable model that will enable us to deliver excellent value to our stakeholders’ year on year.

Looking at the bigger picture, our aim is to continue to be at the forefront of improving the next generation’s health and well-being and to inspire a lasting love and passion for fresh food in young people. Staff are absolutely crucial to this vision, it’s one of the reasons we are investing in becoming an Employer of Choice. As part of this investment we’ve put new team structures in place to ensure a clearly defined and consistent offer and honest, fresh food across all our schools and colleges.

I’d like to thank all staff and everyone that Pabulum works with for contributing to such a fantastic year for us – here’s to more successes to come this year!