Posted 6 months ago


We are excited to announce that starting July 1, 2017, membership to the META Solutions Purchasing Cooperative will be FREE for all K-12 educational entities! The META Board of Directors approved the free membership at the January 24, 2017 board meeting.

Additional information will be provided shortly.

Posted about 1 month ago

Food Bid Information

2017-2018 Food Service Pricing Awards

This year’s food bids are finally done and out!  Again this year the bid represents over 1,000,000 Ohio students and is now shared by 5 Ohio Co-ops:  META Solutions, Southwestern Ohio EPC, OMERESA, Stark County Co-Op and now Ohio Schools Council.

You may view the 2017-2018 Food Service documents via this link:

If you have not already done so, please bookmark this link! 

Within this link, you will find folders for Bakery, Dairy, Food- Commercial, Ice Cream, Paper/Plastics/Smallwares/Cleaning Supplies, and Produce- coming soon! 

Remember:  the 2017-2018 Pricing is not yet valid; it will become effective July 1, 2017.  We have made the pricing and information available to you ahead of time so you may begin working on next year’s menus prior to this school year ending. 

More information about each category:

 Food- Commercial – Your district may choose between Gordon Food Service, Ellenbee Leggett, Sysco Cincinnati, Rightway and Valley if they service you.  In the Food- Commercial folder you’ll find information in individual Awarded Vendors folders.  There is also a contact form so you can reach out to each distributor if you are interested in purchasing with them.  The bid document with pricing is entitled FOOD BID ALL AWARDED VENDORS.  This is the document that shows you what was bid along with bid pricing (by case and by unit price).  This document has a few new tools.  It’s searchable by category so you can look up Desserts if you want and find all the desserts on the bid.  It also has a blue column on the far right where you can input the number of cases you need and it will calculate the cost for your total cases.  In this way, it may be easier to see how much you’ll save by buying with one distributor vs. another.  We’ve awarded multiple new vendors so this year seems to be the year to try new things!  Anything in GREEN is a new item; we thought color coding it made it easier for you to find new items.  Want to recommend new items to add to the addendum bid?  Please see the form entitled Recommend New Bid Items!  It will give you a link to a form to fill out.  Finally, this folder also contains a bid evaluation documents folder and procurement forms folder.  These will be updated as you tell us what you need!  We anticipate you having access to any documents you need for your AR in one spot to make life easier! 

Paper/PlasticsYour district may choose between Gordon Food Service, Sysco Cincinnati, I-Supply, Ellenbee Leggett, and Rightway.  There is a contact form within this folder so please contact these vendors to see if they will service you.   


Small Wares & ChemicalsYour district may choose between Gordon Food Service, Rightway, Sysco Cincinnati, and I-Supply.  There is a contact form within this folder so please contact these vendors to see if they will service you.   


Bakery –  We are pleased to report this is an extension year for this bid and all bakeries extended without any price increases.  Awarded vendors include Aunt Millie’s, Klosterman, Schwebel’s or Nickles.     


Ice Cream Your district may choose between Hershey’s, Smith Foods, and Ice Cream Specialties.  We are pleased to report this also an extension year for this bid and all companies extended without any price increasesSmith Foods will only provide ice cream where they provide dairy. 


Dairy – Borden, Modern, Smith and United responded to the bid extension request without a price increase!  You may continue using the dairy you have now, again with NO price increase.


Produce The produce bid has gone out and was due back to the EPC by May 25th so you’ll have properly procured bid pricing on produce by July 1, 2017.  This information will be communicated via e-mail as soon as it is available. 

If you have any question as to which Bakery, Dairy or Ice Cream vendors service your district there is a handy “District Zone Chart” in the META DropBox link.  Just choose your district from the pull down list and you will see which vendors you have to choose from. 

If you need any assistance with this just let us know.  We are always happy to be of assistance!

Posted 5 months ago

Purchasing Cooperative Update

Dear Purchasing Members: 

META Solutions recently conducted an organizational analysis. As a result of the analysis, we restructured many positions and departments, including the Purchasing Cooperative. Moving forward, I will be your contact for all things purchasing-related, including the cooperative programs, vendors and initiatives. I am extremely excited about this opportunity and look forward to working with each and every one of you. 
To give you some background on myself, I have worked in the technical and educational markets for the past 27 years, including serving in various capacities at ITCs for the past 18. Prior to the META/SEOVEC merger, I served as the CEO at SEOVEC. While there, I worked closely with the MEC and AEPA Cooperative Purchasing Programs. In addition, I have served on the Board of Directors at OCEPC/AEPA and MCOECN for many years.
I’m thrilled to join the existing purchasing team which includes the very talented Jen Alfman and Tony VanGundy. Together, they bring more than 25 years of experience in purchasing and procurement, specifically as it relates to our food, energy and insurance programs.
Jen was hired by META (formerly MEC) in 2013 as an administrative assistant and quickly moved up the ranks to purchasing coordinator. After the MEC/TRECA merger, Jen served as Columbus’s site facilitator, while handling the cooperative’s insurance program and billing. Moving forward, Jen will be your main point of contact for website questions, vendor updates, bid requests and more. She is excited to transition into a vital part of the purchasing cooperative again to better serve our clients.
Tony also joined META in 2013, bringing more than 20 years of experience to the purchasing team. He was hired to head up the development of META’s utility auditing program, a service that helps identify inefficient buildings, billing errors and calculated savings with electric and gas suppliers. Tony has been involved with the purchasing of electric for school districts since the inception of deregulation; a timeframe that spans more than 17 years. Districts have been able to obtain very low costs for power and have saved millions of dollars during this time. With respect to natural gas, META has provided record low costs for the members the last few years, which is an ongoing effort of the Energy Committee spearheaded by Tony.
I appreciate all of your support during this time and look forward to meeting each of you. Should you have any questions, comments or concerns, I encourage you to reach out to Jen, Tony or myself at any time. Our contact information is included below.
Jimmy Battrell
Phone: 740-590-2204
Jen Alfman
Phone: 614-934-6510
Tony VanGundy
Phone: 614-934-6533

Thank you!
Jimmy Battrell 

Posted 6 months ago

Meal Rate Increase for META/EPC Commodity Cooperative!

The META/EPC Commodity Cooperative has just received a meal rate increase for all districts in the Coop! Our entitlement was increased from $.32 to $.3484 which amounts to more than $2 million in additional federal dollars for Ohio schools!

This wouldn't be possible without the responsible spending of all of our food service directors throughout the Commodity Coop. Great job all!

Posted 8 months ago

New Purchasing Resource Page

For those of you familiar with the old MEC Purchasing Portal, check out the new META Purchasing Resource Page to find almost everything you need. If it's not there, feel free to contact!

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