Our Story

With a solid career behind them in Ireland’s catering and hospitality sector by the early 2000’s, our joint MDs Colm and Aideen O’Brien had already seen their fair share of trends and opportunities. But a government programme would help them take this expertise in food services and use it to drive real change – with transformational results for so many.

One of our Logistics Team Members

Keeping bellies full and young minds open

The 2003 Healthy School Meals program was a pilot plan designed to provide funding towards the provision of food services for disadvantaged school children. It was a new idea that could spark major change and Colm and Aideen were intrigued from the get go. 

After winning that first tender, they took huge pride in seeing the project kick-off in their adopted home city of Limerick. And on an autumn day in Limerick, 27 schoolchildren sat down to a healthy, nutritious lunch. Their principal and teachers could immediately see the many advantages of increased attention spans and concentration levels that only full bellies can give. 

“They give such a variety of wholesome healthy choices in their menu’s and accommodate all of our dietary requirements too. Updating and adapting their menu’s on a regular basis and if needed there is always someone to touch base with at the end of the phone.”

Principal - Client School

Cold Food

Feeding children is our passion

At Carambola, all of our staff are passionate about providing meals to children all over the country. Many of our staff have children in Carambola schools, and so we understand and appreciate the importance of providing great quality food in tasty meals!

Making school life just that bit easier for children, teachers, and principals alike

As a new industry, there was no manual or how-to guide to follow. But the O’Brien’s would draw on their experience, business instincts and compassion to make this happen for schools all over Ireland. After a well-earned coffee on that first day in Moyross, Colm and Aideen sat down to figure out how they could do just that - and Carambola was born.

In just two decades, the 27 children that were fed on the edge of Limerick city has grown to over 30,000 children getting lunches, hot meals and healthy snacks every year in every county in Ireland. Now, as the longest-established and most experienced school lunches company around, we’re going from strength to strength. And that same focus on service and quality that was there in Moyross in 2003 is still there today.

We look forward to many more years to come!