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SEAC announces Pay As You Dine to be reviewed

Posted by Sam Baggott on
SEAC announces Pay As You Dine to be reviewed

British military ‘scoff’ provided by Sodexo and others is to be reviewed

Private catering companies who provide PAYD food services to UK Armed Forces personnel are to be reviewed and will be put under the MoD’s spotlight.

It is thought that this review has been called for after the ever-increasing number of images and videos military personnel are posting online, showing some of the less than appealing food they are being served.

In a blog post announcing the review, the Senior Enlisted Advisor to the Chiefs of Staff Committee (SEAC), Glenn Haughton OBE said:

“I am very pleased to announce that we have gained agreement from the Ministry of Defence and the single Services to conduct a review of PAYD this year. I will be working closely with a Tiger Team of subject matter experts from the Defence Nutrition Advisory Service and the single Services to carry out the review across the Defence Estate.”

He went on to say that Covid-19 may have a knock-on for the timeline initially, but the hope is to have the report finalised by end of 2021. 

Adding: “PAYD is complex and standards differ across the Defence estate. My job, the Chain of Command’s job, is to hold people accountable be it at unit or Defence level, but also to find the truth and this review will bring that.”

Previously, service personnel paid a monthly tariff (deducted automatically from their wages) that allowed them to eat three meals a day, provided by uniformed military chefs - who were held accountable by defence bosses. 

Some personnel argued that if they missed meals, they were still being charged, so military top brass allowed PAYD to be introduced in 2004.

This allowed private contractors to takeover military feeding, with the support of some military chefs, personnel were then required to pay for each individual meal that they ate.

Since then, 'military banter' Facebook page, Fill Your Boots (FYB) has been posting images of the 'poor quality of food' being provided across the defence community.

Personnel anonymously send in all of their gripes into FYB, everything from pictures of ‘s*** scoff’ to issues with their accommodation.

One junior soldier who wishes to remain anonymous said: “It seems to be the only way to get the chain of command to listen, they simply don’t care about these issues.

“It is like you have to shame them into doing something about it. The minute a picture is leaked online, things start to slightly improve.”

Over the years, personnel have sent in thousands of pictures to FYB, such as raw and uncooked blood-ridden chicken, maggots in food, out of date, mouldy produce and pictures of substandard accommodation.

We have approached private contractors and the Ministry of Defence for comment.

 

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