The Princess Royal visited family business Oakland International’s head office in Redditch to thank and acknowledge the company and their team’s efforts in supporting the nation and ensuring food continued to reach retailer shelves and ultimately people’s homes throughout the Covid-19 pandemic.
Meeting and speaking with Oakland team members from across the business, Her Royal Highness was also introduced to Oakland brand partner Mindful Chef, key customer Golden Acre and representatives from the company’s children’s charity, Oakland Foundation, before unveiling a bench commemorating her visit to the company and its Key workers who worked throughout the pandemic.
Escorting The Princess Royal, Dean Attwell group chief executive and co-founder of Oakland International said: “It was a huge honour and privilege to welcome HRH The Princess Royal to Oakland International and to have our team’s work during the pandemic acknowledged as well as that of our key partners who stood by us in essential support services.”
Working throughout the pandemic brand partner, Mindful Chef, provided NHS staff with discounted meal kits and key customer Golden Acre helped with the provision of free food bags for commercial drivers containing drinks, sandwiches and snacks.
Covid impacted several Oakland’s team who sadly lost loved ones, and indeed colleagues.
Over the last year Oakland International has invested more than £700k in Covid prevention measures to protect employees including extending staff canteen facilities, introducing and installing new technology, and they were the first UK company to install the Shield-me dry-mist fogging system.
Oakland general manager Jamie Robinson said: “The team were really thrilled to meet Her Royal Highness. She left a lasting impression on so many people through her level of engagement and interest in them personally and in the part each team member played during the pandemic lockdown.”
Oakland executive assistant to group board of directors Jane Thompson added: “Staff commented that they had been overwhelmed and honoured that the Princess had taken the time to visit them, and that her visit has been a great moral booster and great encouragement for the whole team.”