“Canteens for children and the elderly at risk of closure”
“After months of confrontation with the institutions, unfortunately we are forced to recognize that we have come to nothing”. With these words, Carlo Scarsciotti, President of Angem, the National Association of Collective Catering, expressed his disappointment at the failure of the dialogue process that was underway with the Government. “Ours is a sector which, due to this situation, is dying day after day. It is a condition that does not allow us to plan our future and for which we are forced to interrupt today the dialogues for the renewal of the reference National Collective Agreement”, commented Scarsciotti, also adding that the associations are ready to take to the streets to make your voice heard.
Already at the end of 2022, Angem and FIPE – Confcommercio had launched an appeal for an intervention by the executive to protect companies in the sector to push it to proceed on several fronts: clearly determine the price revision clause, provide for the adjustment contract for old and new contracts automatically and favor fixed-cost tenders. On the other hand, it is a sector that offers a fundamental service for schools, hospitals, nursing homes and assistance centres. In fact, around 760 million meals are provided within these structures.
To this it must be added that the situation has worsened from an economic and organizational point of view as well. You need to consider the cost of preparing a meal increased by 55% while the sale price remained unchanged. A crisis situation which, however, has not stopped the activities of the sector, which instead has continued to provide an essential service so as not to cause any kind of damage to those who use it. Despite this, the issue does not appear to be a topic of particular political interest. At least for now. And yet, we are talking about a reference area that employs more than 1,500 companies for a total of 92,000 workers (of which 80% are women) and with a turnover of 6.4 billion a year. These are data that should arouse the interest of the institutions. We are talking about companies that “are crucial for food education, public health and also for a form of distribution equity”, as also declared by the President of Confcommercio, Carlo Sangalli, at the States General for Collective Catering of Angem held in December 2022.
If the appeals go unheeded, they warn Angem e FIPE, there is a concrete risk that more than 5 million Italians, including children and the elderly, will be left without something warm to eat. Precisely for these reasons, the social partners have decided to mobilize at a national level to express their dissent in front of the main institutional offices for the lack of consideration received. In the end, the fear is that a story that instead affects a decisive sector both in the field of food but also in the ecological and economic one will be underestimated.
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