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House of Commons Hansard
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26 November 2009
Volume 501
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To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what estimate he has made of the proportion of (a) lamb, (b) beef, (c) chicken, (d) pork, (e) turkey, (f) other meats, (g) vegetables and (h) fruit procured by his Department that was produced in the UK in the latest period for which figures are available; and if he will make a statement; [300190]

(2) how many Christmas parties his Department plans to host in 2009; what has been budgeted for each such reception; what estimate he has made of the proportion of (a) lamb, (b) beef, (c) chicken, (d) pork, (e) turkey, (f) other meats, (g) vegetables, (h) fruit and (i) alcohol to be served at each such function which is produced in the UK; and if he will make a statement.

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The proportion of domestically produced food procured by the Department has gone up from 58.5 per cent. in 2006-07 to 74 per cent. in 2007-08. Figures for 2008-09 are not currently available.

Quadrant Catering provides the staff restaurant and hospitality catering at the Department of Health sites in London and Eurest Services provides the same services to the Department of Work and Pensions, which includes the Quarry House site in Leeds where some Health employees are based. Both Quadrant Catering and Eurest Services are part of Compass Group UK and Ireland, one of the United Kingdom's largest contract caterers.

Specific information about British products used within the Department of Health and Department of Work and Pensions contracts is listed as follows. This information was made publicly available in late 2008 and there will be another report produced towards the end of 2009.

Proportion of domestically produced food used (by value), i.e. indigenously produced, 1 April 2007 to 31 March 2008

Percentage

Bakery—e.g. bread loaves and rolls (i.e. origin of ingredients used and not where baked)

100

Dairy

Whole eggs (i.e. in shells)

100

Fresh milk (e.g. whole, semi-skimmed, skimmed)

100

Cheese

85

Vegetables, salads and fruit

Ware potatoes—whole, unprepared

95

Processed potatoes—for prepared both whole and cut

95

Roots and onions—e.g. carrots, parsnips, onions, turnips and Swedes

95

Brassicas—e.g. brussel sprouts, cabbage and cauliflower

64

Legumes—e.g. beans (broad), beans (runner and dwarf), peas (green for market), peas (green for processing), peas (harvested dry)

50

Protected vegetables—e.g. tomatoes (round, vine, plum and cherry), tomatoes (cold), cucumbers, lettuce, celery, sweet peppers

25

Other vegetables—e.g. asparagus, celery, leeks, lettuce, watercress

51

Orchard fruit—e.g. dessert apples, culinary apples, pears, plums

51

Soft fruit—e.g. strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, blackcurrants

41

Meat and poultry

Poultry meat

100

Beef and veal

85

Mutton and lamb

60

Bacon

0

Pork

85

Fish

40

Overall percentage indigenous food

74

Overall percentage indigenous food by value if available

75

All expenditure by civil servants is undertaken in accordance with the “Civil Service Management Code” and in accordance with the principles of Managing Public Money and the Treasury handbook on Regularity and Propriety. The Department does not fund internal Christmas parties for officials, and staff are expected to fund these parties themselves. The Department does not collect information about the Christmas functions hosted or attended by officials in the Department and to do so would incur disproportionate cost.