THE founder of a catering business has revived his original vision of putting healthy lunches on individual desks thanks to the rise of Deliveroo and Uber Eats.

Oli Perron founded Lunch’d after experience as a chef and working in the digital sector, with the mission of delivering ‘slow’ food to working people.

But delivering to fewer than 10 people in one place proved unviable and the business focused on catering for groups and events like Silicon Beach, You Are the Media Lunch Club and Bournemouth’s Digital Innovation Show.

“If there had been Deliveroo and Uber Eats when we started, it would have been amazing,” said Mr Perron.

Lunch’d is to join the two online delivery platforms next Wednesday, March 7, at the same time as adding a menu of hot dishes including a Big Phat Greek Box, moussaka and Greek salad, Jurassic Chilli Rocks and Dorset Skinny Lasagne.

Lunch’d began after Mr Perron moved to Dorset from London, intending to go into business selling vegetables to restaurants. “That didn’t work and I ended up working for a digital company,” he said.

“After a couple of years doing that, I wanted to go back into the kitchen. My boss asked me, when I left, whether I could make a healthy lunch for everyone. I made a healthy salad using local produce. From there, 10-12 other agencies within a couple of months asked me if I could make food for their lunchtimes as well.

“I realised that big offices had their in-house catering but for small and medium sized companies there was just supermarkets and Subway. There was no one doing reasonably priced food delivered to people’s offices.”

He made more than 1,000 lunches from his original premises in Ashley Cross but could not profitably cater for small numbers in one place. “I had to pivot the business after a year,” he said.

The arrival of online delivery services has made delivering to small numbers at work or at home possible, he said.

Mr Perron now makes his food from the kitchen of the Ocean View Hotel on Bournemouth’s East Cliff. “We’re in the centre of town, which means we can produce restaurant quality food but at half the price which everybody else is able to do it for,” he said.

His standard dishes are vegan, with meat available as an optional extra.

“What I’ve done is take something like moussaka, which is comfort food, and make it healthy,” he said.

“Meat’s become more expensive and it seems a no-brainer to eat less meat, have one meal a day that doesn’t have meat. We should be responsible enough to know that the best thing we can do environmentally is not eat meat.”