Pasta at £47 a bag, £42,000 on biscuits and a public sector that can't be trusted with our money.
Eastern and Coastal Kent NHS Trust has been sourcing the food from a supplier which charges £5 a pack, plus a £1 dispensary fee, a £1 pharmacy fee and £40 for delivery.
The £47 doesn't even include the sauce. It would almost be funny - if the money wasn't coming straight from our pockets. Sadly, the £47 pack of pasta is all too typical of the waste that is endemic in public sector procurement.
One year into the Government's austerity drive, we are beginning to discover the shocking extent of this profligacy.
One ministry was managing to spend £73 on each box of copier paper — something which can be bought in bulk for just £8. Another office was buying laptops for £2,000 each — six times the going rate. A publicity campaign cost the taxpayer £1.31 in printing costs for each leaflet that should have cost 26p.
The most absurd example of all, however, came from George Osborne’s own office at the Treasury. Last December, the Chancellor was quoted £875 to supply a Christmas tree.
My comment: The private sector will always try and maximise their profits, it is up to the purchaser to get the best deal. Unfortunately, most of the public sector have no idea how to negotiate a good deal, whether that be for a bag of pasta or a PFI contract.
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