The British Hospitality Association (BHA) has revealed that the food and service management (FSM) sector has doubled in size over the last 20 years, becoming what it calls one of the “most economically and socially relevant” industries in the UK.
Unveiling the findings of its ‘Food & Service Management Report’ in central London this morning, the BHA said the market for food and related management service was now worth £4.25 billion in turnover, with 80% of companies recording an increase in net revenues last year.
The report takes into account pure contract caterers, providers of catering and soft services, and those providing integrated facilities management.
Representatives from the likes of Sodexo, Elior, CH&Co, BaxterStorey, Lexington Catering, Bartlett Mitchell and Vacherin were present for the launch of the report, which demonstrates how such catering establishments are helping to turn the wheels of UK business and industry.
The study shows that FSM companies operate more than 14,400 outlets and employ 132,000 people. 41% are aged 30 and under, emphasising the sector’s role in driving the employment of young people.
What’s more, the industry is led by both men and women, with 89% of FSM members having at least one woman on their board. Many are far exceeding the FTSE 100 goal of having 25% female board members by 2015. The BHA says that 44% of its FSM member companies are led by women.
Ufi Ibrahim, CEO of the BHA, said: “The causes which most matter to the hospitality community are the backbone of our work, and the FSM report showcases that this flourishing UK sector is promoting healthy lifestyles, providing healthy food, security, organisation and business support across UK companies. The report provides a picture of one of the most economically and socially relevant industries in the UK today.”
As well as doubling in size during the past 20 years, the FSM sector has increasingly broadened its range of services to clients across commerce and communities.
While catering is still at the heart of food and services management, the business has also evolved to become today’s diverse multiple services sector where catering is one of hundreds of different services provided — from reception to print management, cleaning to grounds maintenance and engineering.