Your Frequently Asked Questions
You should find everything you need to know about our nursery catering here. If you have any further questions we would love to hear from you - so please get in touch.
Zebedees offer nursery catering and deliver over 8000 hot nursery meals and over 3500 Afternoon Teas to nurseries across East and West Sussex, Kent, London, Brighton, Surrey and Essex.
Q: Is there a minimum order requirement?
A minimum order of 15 hot lunches a day is required to keep the temperature of the food at or above the required level until the time of serving.
Q: How do we place an order?
Our nursery catering team will email you a unique log-in to our bespoke online ordering system ZOO (Zebedees Online Ordering). You complete the online form and submit each week. There is also the option to repeat a previous order.
Q: How much does your service cost?
Please get in touch to discuss prices for our nursery catering in your area. We deliver to nurseries based in East and West Sussex, Kent, London, Brighton, Surrey and Essex.
Q: How do we pay for our order?
We ask for all payment by Direct Debit within 14 days from the date an invoice is raised.
Q: Where do you deliver to?
We deliver nursery meals and afternoon teas to much of the South East and currently deliver to over 275 locations throughout East Sussex, West Sussex, Kent, London, Brighton, Surrey and Essex. Please contact us to see if we deliver to your area. We are constantly expanding the locations that we deliver to, so if we are not in your area at present, we may be in the near future. Please feel free to contact our nursery catering team to register your interest and we will notify you if we move into your area.
Q: How does the food arrive?
Our meals are delivered using our fleet of VW eco transporter vans, all of which are branded with our logo. Our drivers are friendly, reliable and all have ID badges, Zebedees branded uniforms and are DBS checked.
Q: Is the packaging recyclable?
All our equipment is re-usable. We use temperature-controlled, insulated thermoport boxes, stainless steel tins and clear plastic containers. We ask every nursery to rinse and clear all containers after use and place them inside the boxes, ready for collection the following day.
Q: How do you ensure the food stays hot?
Cooking methods during production ensure a core food temperature of at least 90 degrees, at which point the foods are loaded into thermoport containers. This initial cook temperature and the type of containers/delivery times have been tested to ensure that when the food is delivered to you, it will be at a temperature of above 63 degrees. in the unlikely event that the hot food has fallen below the legal standard of 63°c at service, we are able to demonstrate that this period of time will be minimal, and has not exceeded a 2 hour period.
Q: What time will the food arrive?
We aim to deliver the meals and/or afternoon tea to all of our clients by 12.00 noon each day, however the exact time of delivery depends on your location and which of our rounds you are placed on. You will be given your delivery time prior to commencing nursery catering service with us, and will do our best to arrive well in advance of your daily serving time.
Q: How do you avoid delays?
All of our nursery catering vans are fitted with a satellite navigation tracking system, which allows us to monitor the precise location of each vehicle throughout the day. This gives us the ability to provide all clients with accurate timings for their deliveries of meals, in the event of any delays due to traffic, weather or other factors. In the unlikely event of delay, our nursery catering team will contact you to let you know the anticipated delivery time. Our vans undergo regular checks by our Transport Department, and are meticulously serviced to ensure reliability.
Q: Can we freeze/reheat the food?
All our dishes are made to be eaten at lunchtime on day of delivery and not to be cooled down for reheating or freezing for consumption at a later time or date.
Q: How quickly can we have a delivery?
Orders must be placed each week by 12 noon on the preceding Thursday. However, alterations to your nursery catering orders can be made up until 4pm the day before the delivery is due. If you need an emergency order, phone us the day before and, stock permitting, your food will be delivered by 12 o’clock the following day.
Q: Can we use you to cover absence and holidays?
Zebedees not only offer permanent nursery catering contracts but if required for any reason, such as staff holidays or sickness, we can offer a temporary service to cover all your needs.
What does a typical menu look like?
You can see our standard nursery catering menus here.
Is the food fresh?
We receive fresh ingredients daily and all our hot food is cooked on the day of delivery, to ensure quality and freshness.
Can we taste the food before we order?
Yes, please contact us to arrange a no obligation taster session.
The best way to see how our nursery catering service will fit into your daily routine is to try it. We believe our nursery food speaks for itself and offer a no-obligation taster service. You can enjoy a selection from our current menu including nursery lunches and afternoon tea. We’d be delighted to come and visit your nursery in Sussex, Kent, London, Brighton, Surrey or Essex.
How often does the menu change?
The nursery catering menus for lunches and afternoon teas operate on a 3 weekly cycle and are changed twice a year, to allow for variety and the use of seasonal ingredients.
Do we have to follow the menu?
We have a set nursery catering menu, but some ingredients may be substituted in accordance with specific dietary or cultural requirements.
Please ask us for more information.
Where do you source your meat and ingredients?
We believe in the importance of promoting fresh, local food. Zebedees work closely with local suppliers from Kent & Sussex, thus ensuring we keep our food miles to a minimum. This guarantees that we receive excellent quality fresh ingredients and services at a price that is fair to both parties.
See our Ethical Credentials section on the Nutrition Page.
Is your food healthy and nutritious?
We are the only early years food provider to employ a full time in-house Nutritionist to ensure that our meals are low in salt and added sugars and contain the right amount of nutrients to support the high energy requirements of pre-school children.
Don't forget to book your free taster!
We would be delighted to meet you and give you some of our delicious food to taste for yourself. Please talk to us to book in your free no obligation taster. Our team would be happy to travel with nursery catering food samples to your nursery in East Sussex, West Sussex, Kent, London, Brighton, Surrey or Essex.