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Contract award procedures and award criteria in the catering services in Finland

Irma Tikkanen (University of Eastern Finland, Kuopio, Finland and Laurea University of Applied Sciences, Espoo, Finland)
Hanna Kaleva (Laurea University of Applied Sciences, Espoo, Finland)

British Food Journal

ISSN: 0007-070X

Article publication date: 9 August 2011




The purpose of this paper is to explore what kinds of contract award procedures and award criteria are followed when the municipalities make public procurements in catering services in Finland.


The literary review is related to the concepts of public procurements and, subsequently, interrelated regulations are introduced. Moreover, the municipal catering services are illustrated. Empirical data were collected in the spring of 2009 from the Finnish public procurement journal and from HILMA internet websites concerning the contract notices and the contract award notices between 1 January 2007 and 14 May 2009. The objects of the contract, thresholds, contract award procedures, sectors of contract awards, as well as both the selection and the award criteria were analysed in the contract notices. A total of 34 contract notices were discovered, out of which 24 could be utilised.


The contract award procedures could be divided into either open procedures or restricted procedures. Maximum budgets in the contract notices consisted of both the types exceeding the EU thresholds or those remaining below it. Concerning the award criteria, the relative weightings (median) concerning the price amounted to 60 per cent, whereas the quality measured 40 per cent.

Practical implications

The results can be utilised when exploring the competitive tendering in catering services using larger data, and as a guidebook when public catering services are put out to tender.


The dimensions of quality found offer new ideas for procurement authorities as the award criteria.



Tikkanen, I. and Kaleva, H. (2011), "Contract award procedures and award criteria in the catering services in Finland", British Food Journal, Vol. 113 No. 8, pp. 952-964.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2011, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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