More than 20 catering businesses in the UK have partnered to launch a new platform called ‘Food Service Circle’ (FSC) to support former employees affected by the pandemic.

As part of the collaboration initiative created by the UKHospitality’s Foodservice Forum, the companies aim to offer support to those employees who were affected by the economic fallout of Covid-19.

Together, they will create a support network, which will enable the affected employees to stay connected.

Furthermore, employees can continue to develop their skills and knowledge as they look for new employment.

Acting as a one-stop-shop for all former team members, FSC will offer free training, counsel, advice and job opportunities.

Contract catering businesses from across the foodservice sector in the UK meet on a regular basis as part of the Foodservice Forum to discuss issues that are affecting the industry.

They have worked together to feed into UKHospitality’s guidance to the government during the Covid-19 crisis.

ABM Catering, Amadeus, Aramark, Artizian, Bartlett Mitchell, BaxterStorey, Blue Apple, Celtic Catering, Churchill, CH&Co, Compass Group, Elior, Genuine Dining, Graysons, Harrison, Houston and Hawkes, OCS, Sodexo, Susa Comms and Vacherin are the companies involved in FSC.

UKHospitality board member Wendy Bartlett said: “It has been heartbreaking to see how the pandemic has impacted some of the incredibly talented and loyal team members across all of our organisations.

“We all have a real sense of duty to the people who have worked so hard to make our businesses the successes they have been, that’s why it was important for all of us to create this cohesive support network.”

Every week, FSC will house webinars and provide guidance for those seeking employment.

Additionally, insight sessions will be organised by leaders from each of the companies to update job seekers on the latest developments within their own business.

The UK’s FSM sector had a collective turnover of £10.9bn and employed more than 293,000 people, according to the UKHospitality Food Service Management Market Report published last year.