Notification of New School Meals Prices from 1st April 2024

To be completed by:

Time: - | Venue:

In keeping with previous years, a review of the school meal prices has been undertaken.

Dear Colleague,



I am writing to inform you that in keeping with previous years and as was mentioned in my last communication in September 23, a review of all school meal prices has now been undertaken.

The outcome of this review is that, from Monday 1st April 2024, the minimum standard school meal prices will be as follows:

PRICE (per meal)

Nursery                                              £2.10

Primary / Special                               £2.30

Adult Full Meal                                  £3.60

Adult Meal Only                                £2.60

Adult Pudding Only                          £1.30

Over the last couple of years we have continued to see a minimum 25% increase in meal ingredient costs and at least a 10% increase in labour costs, with the latter being mainly due to rises in the living wage. Yet despite these huge inflationary pressures, FM Catering have continued to minimise their impact by improving our efficiency and maintaining high meal uptake levels.

School meal prices in the Bradford district still remain amongst the lowest in the country and are excellent value for money for a nutritionally balanced 2 course set lunch. As you are no doubt aware, the Universal Infant Free School Meal government funding rate had recently increased by 12p to assist with the above pressures catering services are facing. We hope that this funding rate will increase even further in the coming months. This 10p paid meal price rise will benefit schools by:

  • Increasing the paid meal income
  • Reducing the net cost of the catering service
  • Helping to keep down future contract charges / increases to schools

A further rise in October 2024 is also likely to be required in order to continue keeping pace with inflation. By taking these recommended small staggered approaches in line with the school menu changes, the burden to families struggling in the current climate will hopefully be minimised.

Please could you inform parents of this increase and include, if possible, details of the Benefits Service (01274 432771/2/3) to help ensure that those who qualify for free meal entitlement will take up that option.

Your school kitchen Chef Manager has been sent an electronic survey via their tablet that needs to be completed by all sites in order to acknowledge you are aware of this pending increase and in turn will communicate it with parents prior to the end of the current academic term.

If you do require any further information or clarification, please contact me using the details at the top of this letter.


NB: This price increase will bring all FM Catering schools up to the new minimum standard £2.30 per pupil meal price (£2.10 in Nursery schools). Almost all Primary schools in the district currently charge £2.20 per pupil meal. Those few schools who have their meal price currently set higher than this can of course follow suit and apply an additional increase to maintain their current margin if they see fit. This can be communicated through the kitchen survey you will be asked to complete. FM Services will make all necessary system changes, including the updating of ParentPay, to reflect the price increases.


Published: 12/03/2024
Audience: Primary School Business Managers & Head Teachers
Contact: Craig Webb

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