The Lunch Bag will create 240 new full-time jobs.
A company located in Nenagh, County Tipperary, that produces hot meals for primary school students is set to hire an extra 240 employees to get ready and distribute over 100,000 free meals daily, as part of the upcoming expansion of the program. The Lunch Bag, which has been creating hot school meals for kids for the past five years, is investing €7.5 million into this expansion. They currently have 200 employees and plan to more than double their workforce next year, additionally offering part-time positions for another 450 staff responsible for assembling meals in schools.
This significant expansion of The Lunch Bag’s food preparation and assembly facility near Nenagh is in response to the government’s announcement of substantial plans to grow the school hot meals program in the years to come. What began as a small pilot program in 2019 involving 30 schools has now expanded to encompass 1,700 schools and 300,000 primary school students, with a cost of €94.4 million in the previous year.
The government’s budget includes further expansion of the scheme, allocating additional funds to cover an additional 900 non-DEIS schools and provide meals for another 150,000 students. The government’s objective is to make the free hot meals program available in every school by 2030. In light of this growing demand, The Lunch Bag is expanding its facilities and bringing on board an additional 240 employees to increase their daily meal preparation from 35,000 to 100,000 meals.
These meals are prepared, packaged, and individually labelled with each child’s name, then delivered to each school by truck. They are then placed in an oven by a designated food handler, also employed by The Lunch Bag, in time for distribution at the scheduled lunchtime.
Read more about The Lunch Bag on their official website here.