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School Meals

Volume 406: debated on Thursday 12 June 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what steps he is taking to encourage schools to develop whole school food policies; and if he will make a statement. [117417]

[holding answer 9 June 2003]: Our Food in Schools programme (run jointly with the Department of Health) supports all aspects of food education within the National Curriculum as well as a range of projects aimed at developing healthy eating habits. We are producing guidance to encourage schools to adopt a consistent approach to teaching about diet, nutrition, cooking, food hygiene and safety, and to reflect this approach in the provision of food that pupils eat at school.

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what steps he is taking to encourage LEAs to ensure that meals provided on school premises are low in sugar, fat and salt; and if he will make a statement. [118145]

In April 2001, this Department introduced regulations that set nutritional standards for school lunches together with complementary guidance to assist caterers in preparing school meals. The guidance makes various recommendations for reducing the amount of fat, sugar and salt in school lunches and recommends that foods containing fat and sugar should make up no more than 10 per cent. of the total foods on offer over the course of one week. It is for local education authorities or, where the budget for school meals is delegated to them, a school's governing body, to decide the ingredients and dishes that will be on offer at lunchtime.