Fourth royal honour for apetito


Healthcare sector food producer, apetito has been honoured with the UK’s highest business accolade, The King’s Awards for Enterprise, Sustainable Development 2024.  

Having previously won three Queen’s Awards for Enterprise (two for Innovation in 2005 and 2016, and one in 2019 for Sustainable Development), apetito is one of an elite number of companies which over the past two decades have won multiple Enterprise awards in both Innovation and Sustainable Development.  

This year, it is one of 252 organisations nationally to be awarded a prestigious King’s Awards for Enterprise, with just 29 businesses being recognised for their work in Sustainable Development.    

The Award recognises apetito’s commitment to conducting business in a way that impacts positively on the environment, society, and economy.  In particular it celebrates apetito’s commitment to sustainability, its ambition to reach Net Zero by 2040, and its work in taking concrete actions to meet challenging short-term targets for carbon reduction and supporting climate change – targets which are validated by the Science Based Targets Initiative (SBTI).  

At the heart of this recognition lies ‘Project Boomerang,’ a pioneering sustainability initiative, initially launched through consumer business Wiltshire Farm Foods and then expanded further by its introduction into the Healthcare sector in early 2023. The ground-breaking project is the world’s first closed-loop recycling system for plastic meal trays on an industrial scale and therefore a first into the NHS – supporting its own ambitious Net Zero targets. 

Not only does the Awards recognise apetito’s sector leading achievement of closed loop production it also referenced the company’s pivotal role in shaping Government policy and driving advancements in recycling practices. 

CEO & Chair of apetito UK & North America, Paul Freeston, underscores that this win reflects the teamwork and values that are shared from top to bottom within the business: “We are proud, honoured and delighted to have been recognised in The King’s Awards for Enterprise: Sustainable Development 2024.  It epitomises the collective hard work, dedication, and vision of our entire team.  

“All of us at apetito are passionate about ‘making a real difference’ to people’s lives and we believe our commitment to sustainable development reflects this. Sustainability informs not just the way we work, but how we treat people, the impact on the environment and our contribution to the economy. Put simply, we believe it’s the right way to do business.”

apetito employs 1900 staff and can trace its heritage back to 1928.  It embodies strong social values and is both an accredited living wage employer and full member of the ethical trading initiative.  All its products are carbon footprinted and it is leading the way to Net Zero across the industry, in its sourcing of sustainable ingredients, food waste reduction and investment into every aspect of its operations to reduce emissions.  


About the Awards

The King’s Awards for Enterprise, previously known as The Queen’s Awards for Enterprise, were renamed last year to reflect His Majesty The King’s desire to continue the legacy of HM Queen Elizabeth II’s by recognising outstanding UK businesses. The Awards celebrate the success of exciting and innovative businesses which are leading the way with pioneering products or services, delivering impressive social mobility programmes, or showing their commitment to excellent sustainable development practices.

The Award programme, now in its 58th year, is the most prestigious business award in the country, with successful businesses able to use the esteemed King’s Awards Emblem for the next five years.

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