The Dinner Ladies have been proudly supporting community events since 2007. We're involved with schools, charities, sports clubs and hospitals.
If you would like to apply for support for your event, please click here.
The Dinner Ladies is a vibrant, multicultural place to work. We are proud that our staff come from all over the world: China, Mongolia, India, Malaysia, the Czech Republic, South America, Germany, England and, yes, even Australia.
Because the business is 100 percent owned and run by its founders, Katherine and Sophie, it still has the feeling of being a family-run operation: we celebrate birthdays and religious and cultural events from round the globe. We believe a happy workplace is also a productive workplace.
We are committed to equal opportunity and to helping staff find a balance between their work and the rest of their lives. In particular, we support those returning to the workforce after parental leave or extended periods of caring for children or others; we value the skills they bring to our business and support their external commitments with flexible arrangements.
As we've grown, our staff has grown with us. Our first dishwasher is now our Operations Manager, our first pumpkin-chopper is now our Customer Relations and HR Manager, our first coolroom packer is Despatch Manager and our first delivery driver has designed the brilliant software system that plots, tracks and records all our deliveries. These great people, along with other key staff members like our Head Chef, are the human heart of the Dinner Ladies – their commitment to excellence and care for our customers makes itself felt in every part of our business.
At the Dinner Ladies, we're committed to efficient, sustainable solutions to sourcing ingredients, packaging our food and disposing of waste.
We go ourselves to Flemington Markets in Sydney twice a week and buy most of our fresh fruit and vegetables from local growers. Our meat is all Australian reared, predominantly grass-fed and all our poultry – chickens, ducks, turkeys and eggs – is free range – and always has been. Our seafood either comes from Australian aquaculture – Humpty Doo barramundi from the Northern Territory and Huon salmon from Tasmania – or is wild caught in Australian waters.
We are a prepared food business and there's no getting round the fact that our dinners need to be packaged in a way that is safe and preserves the quality of the food for you to enjoy at home. But most of the packaging we use can be reused or recycled.
The soft plastic pouches can be rinsed and recycled at the soft plastics bins at your local supermarket and the black CPET and aluminium trays can go into your home recycling bin. Incidentally, the black CPET (plastic) trays are made out of almost entirely recycled material.
We are always keeping our eyes out for innovative, sustainable packaging solutions – let us know if you come across anything we should know about.
We don't have to deal with a lot of packaging waste on our premises. If, for example, you were making a Bolognese at home, you might buy a plastic pack of mince, a tin of tomatoes, a sleeve of basil, a bottle of wine, etc, ending up with a small mountain of containers to deal with.
Our ingredients come in bulk, so we have much less waste per dish and most of that is recyclable cardboard. We're pretty thrifty when it comes to food waste; we use offcuts to make stock and any surplus food gets taken home by staff. We eat our mistakes! But a food business will always create a certain amount of food waste and we store that separately from our general waste. It gets taken away daily and turned into compost to be used on local farms.