Freshtime looks to build better futures

There are scientists, agronomists, food technologists and chefs working at Freshtime UK Ltd.

No doubt there are also people carrying out work in administration, IT, transport and on the factory floor.

All 375 members of staff based at the site in Marsh Lane, Boston, got to where they are as a result of qualifications, experience, hard work and possibly luck.

But Mark Newton, managing director at the business that produces over 170 different product lines, from stir fries to on-the-go salads, is aware that, for many young people across Lincolnshire, there are just too many obstacles to overcome in their life to achieve a decent job.

Or possibly it is because they just don’t have the support they need to believe they can succeed.

That need not be the case any longer because the company has just launched The Freshtime Futures Trust to help every young person in the county achieve their full potential.

Mark, who has three young children of his own, said: “A lot of people don’t get that privileged start in life so our founding principal was we wanted to make a difference to young people around Lincolnshire and surrounding areas. We want to help young people to actually achieve their potential.”

And Mark and his fellow trustees are not restricting their help to people with an interest in joining the food industry.

Any young person, aged 11 to 25, who has an ambition they need help to fulfil can apply for assistance, and that may be for a football scholarship, college course funding, buying equipment that’s needed for a job, or just some encouragement to get their first foot on the ladder.

The project is to be funded through Freshtime’s charitable efforts as part of its social and ethical plan.

The Ally Cadence Trust for Spinal Muscular Atrophy and the Callum Pite Smile charity have previously been selected by staff as charities of the year, and have benefited from significant contributions raised by the company and its suppliers, many of whom work in the South Holland area.

However the company has gone even bigger with its latest charitable effort, and is something Mark says will hopefully continue to support young people for many years to come.

He said: “The Freshtime Futures Trust is our way of putting down long-term roots into the area. It’s not just material things, but opportunities, experiences, days out, little things that can make a big difference.”

Fundraising was kick-started with around £40,000 raised at a gala ball held at Springfields in Spalding, and that will be added to the £15,000 Freshtime raised during its supplier golf days.

The Freshtime Futures Trust trustees come from a wide variety of backgrounds and have plenty of experience to offer.

They include an air commodore, business directors, Lincolnshire Chief Constable Neil Rhodes as well as Freshtime UK chairman Mark Swanwick, head of procurement John Stokes and managing director Mark Newton.

The trust is being launched on various social media platforms, giving easy access to the simple form that has to be filled in It’s also available at

The form may be filled in by young people themselves, or it can be filled in by a parent, guardian, carer, teacher or anybody who feels an individual would benefit from help from the trust. The trust will consider requests for help from any young person with an ambition to achieve.