SPC responds to Royal Commission with new aged care food company

SPC

Press Release: May 31, 2021

SPC RESPONDS TO FEDERAL BUDGET AND ROYAL COMMISSION’S

FINDINGS ON AGED CARE WITH NEW INITIATIVE

One of Australia’s most iconic food groups, SPC, has established a dedicated nutritional health care company, SPC Care, following the damning findings presented recently by the Royal Commission into Aged Care Quality and Safety and the 2021 Federal Budget.

The Royal Commission found two out of three people in aged care facilities were malnourished or at risk of malnutrition, resulting in the Federal Government lifting the Basic Daily Fee for residents to be raised by $10 in the Federal Budget last week.

However this increase of $10, while welcome does not mandate what proportion of the Basic Daily fee is used for meals and meal provision as the Basic Daily Fee can be used by care providers to fund laundry and facilities management

Chairman of SPC, Mr Hussein Rifai, said “Like most Australians, we found the commission’s findings alarming and believe the government should ensure that the resultant increase in the daily fee for residents have a mandated amount that is allocated to meals and thus better food solutions for them.

“We are determined to take leadership of this important issue by establishing a dedicated company focused on improving nutrition for the older population living both in care facilities and at home.

“Currently more than 15 per cent of Australians are 65 years or older and this number is expected to grow to 19.9 per cent by 2058. Many industrial countries around the world are experiencing similar demographic shift in the age of their population.

“So the problem is not going away in Australia or other industrial countries. We at SPC believe positive action needs to be taken now and better food be serviced to aged residents in facilities and at home”, he added.

SPC Care will provide older or infirmed Australians, as well as health care groups, with food that meets diverse nutritional needs. Older individuals have a different nutritional requirement than the younger population. SPC Care has built a centre of excellence in science-based nutrition and is working on further unlocking the nutritional elements of locally grown fruit, grains and vegetables.

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SPC has already been researching and producing fruit-based snack and beverage solutions through its ProVital brand, nutritious specialised meal solutions through its new subsidiary, The Kuisine Company, and home delivered meals through The Good Meal Company. With the creation of the SPC Care company further development funds will be invested to expand the company’s product range and food delivery models.

Bree Vidovich, SPC Chief Commercial Officer said “We are expanding our offering through meal solutions that address special nutritional requirements. As an example, we are making food products easy to open for people that suffer from arthritis and other meal solutions that cater for people with health issues, including dysphagia, diabetes and gluten intolerance.

“Creating these science-based meals, snacks, and beverages will reduce food waste at the point of consumption, improve the mental health of the consumer and most importantly improve the overall health of our ageing population.

“The new company will expand the current range of tasty and nutritious meals that will cater for different ethnic groups, different religious and other dietary requirements. Everybody has the right to eat tasty, high quality, healthy and appropriate meals all day, every day”, she added.

One key issue identified by SPC Care is the lack of knowledge and training of the carers, in aged care homes and even more so of home carers of the unique nutritional requirements of the ageing population.

The result is that older individuals do not receive the nutrition that they need. In response to this critical issue, SPC Care is planning to also provide training and education to carers about nutrition standards, the important role of food in the well-being of older and infirmed Australians. The company is already registering interested carers in care facilities or at home for the training and education.

New private owners acquired SPC from Coca-Cola Amatil Ltd in 2019 and have since invested around $20 million in new information technology, new systems and new management team to both stabilise the business and expand its operations, especially in the care sector.

The company currently exports its products to the US, Thailand, and throughout the Pacific Islands and is looking to expand further overseas and into new sectors of the local market.

Issued By: Tim Allerton 0412 715 707 tallerton

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