UK air-dried fruit and vegetable crisp manufacturer Nim’s Fruit Crisps has secured a deal to supply its products across the NHS foodservice sector in England.

The company has completed the evaluation necessary to appear on the NHS Cold Beverages, Confectionery and Snacks framework.

The deal follows two Hospital Caterers Association meetings, where the response to the benefits of its healthy snacks was positive. Nim’s said that the deal could become its biggest sales source within the next twelve months.

Nim’s Fruit Crisps founder Nimisha Raja said: “This is a major breakthrough for our business and highlights how the NHS is looking to incorporate healthier products into its offer.

“As the only crisp range that has been certified by Public Health England as one of your five a day we knew we had a good opportunity, but still needed to satisfy requirements around sustainability, sales, service, quality and certification to BRC. I’m delighted to say we scored 100%.

“The initial opportunity will be to supply the visitor and staff canteens, but there is also the chance that our products can be offered to patients at the discretion of the catering manager. That potentially could transform our business forever.

“Working with the NHS gives us a fantastic boost in the foodservice sector and we are now actively looking to target other opportunities like Garden County Vending.

“Word is getting out about how natural and aesthetically pleasing our products are for dessert toppings and air-dried ingredients. Combine this with the fact that all food service operators have targets they need to meet in terms of offering healthier CQUIN (Commissioning for Quality and Innovation) compliant alternatives to traditional, high fat, sugary snacks and it appears to be a good time to be expanding our market presence,” concluded Raja.

The NHS foodservice and its healthy eating efforts

Last month, French food services and facilities management company Sodexo opened an outlet of healthy food and juice bar Crussh at the Birmingham Children’s Hospital, UK.

Last year, foodservice supplier Bidfood issued a ‘bank of tools’ to help hospital caterers meet the challenges facing them in understanding and implementing healthy feeding guidelines, implemented in 2017, and to benefit from the funding available to NHS trusts.

NHS England also announced last year plans to ban the sale of sugary drinks on its provider’s premises if action was not taken to reduce consumption.