Policy paper

A plan for public procurement: food and catering: the balanced scorecard

This scorecard shows those buying food or catering services for the public sector how to evaluate the cost of services against other criteria.

This was published under the 2010 to 2015 Conservative and Liberal Democrat coalition government



You should use this balanced scorecard if you are a buyer of food and catering services in the public sector. It helps you evaluate a variety of criteria when making decisions about purchases. It shows you how straightforward criteria, such as cost, can be ‘balanced’ against more complex criteria, including:

  • sustainability in production
  • health and nutrition
  • resource efficiency
  • social – economic value
  • quality of service

This makes sure you chose the best tender, in terms of value for money in its full sense.

The balanced scorecard makes the process of tendering and competing for contracts clearer.

If you are a business wishing to supply to the public sector, you can use it to gain a better understanding of requirements. This could help you to gain access to government and public sector contracts. The scorecard rewards businesses that operate to higher standards, which encourages improvement and innovation.

This is part of a plan for public procurement of food: toolkit.

Published 21 July 2014
Last updated 27 March 2015 + show all updates
  1. Balance scorecard document replaced with version that is annotated with clarifications and extra definitions.

  2. A minor change to the document under the 'Note on assurance schemes' heading.

  3. First published.