Nutritional Information

The reasons for improving the eating habits of young people are clear: childhood obesity is a major threat to longterm health. The statistics are alarming. The British Medical Association predicts that by 2020 over one quarter of children will be obese and that children will have a shorter life expectancy than their parents (Preventing Childhood Obesity, BMA: London). Currently, more than 18% of 2-15 year olds are estimated to be obese (Health Survey for England 2004).

nutritional school meals catering dinners healthy

 

We are constantly presented with choices, and whilst most of us know what is best for us it isn't always easy to choose healthy food over junk food. We help by removing foods high in fat, sugar and sodium from our menu, and by presenting healthy choices in an appealing manner. Problem foods containing high levels of these ingredients are associated with a range of health issues in children, including obesity, anaemia, tooth decay and erosion, and diabetes.


Our excellent lunches have always been popular as they are made from locally sourced fruit, vegetables and quality meats. Whilst many of our competitors are struggling to meet the new standards, our 'freshly cooked from raw ingredients' approach has put us years ahead.


In our primary schools we serve a roast dinner at the hotplate every Wednesday. Our recipe ideas include classic English dishes such as roasts, cottage pies and beef cobblers as well as interesting dishes from around the world like our delicious Mediterranean Stromboli and Jamaican Jerk Chicken. Every dish is served with an assortment of fresh seasonal vegetables and fresh fruit is on offer every day. We also provide a daily vegetarian choice, ranging from our popular Spanish Quiche to our mouthwatering Lenticchie Vegetarian Bolognaise. We succeed in making healthy food very appealing by constantly researching menu ideas. Our catering staff enjoy the challenge of creating exciting new dishes and an ever changing menu captures the imagination of the children. We provide a range of games for children on our website, and alongside this encourage children to offer recipe ideas they would like to see on their schools menu.


Of course with so much focus on our recipes, we are very proud of our menus. Please take a look at the published menu for the current month by clicking here. Parents can use this regularly updated online menu to check day by day what their children will be eating and advise on which choices to make.

 

Foods we encourage    Banned / Restricted  
 

Fruit and Vegetables
At least one serving of vegetables or salad and one of fruit.

  NO Confectionery 
Confectionery such as chocolate bars, chocolate covered biscuits and sweets are not on sale in our canteens.
  Oily Fish 
Oily fish such as mackerel or salmon will be served at least once every three weeks.
  NO Savoury Snacks 
Savoury snacks such as crisps are not available for lunch.
  Bread
Bread will be readily available at lunch every day.
  NO Salt / 
Restricted Condiments 

Salt is not available at lunchtime. Condiments such as ketchup and mayonnaise are only available in sachets and only in senior schools.
  Drinking Water 
Free, fresh drinking water is available at all times.
  Deep Fried Foods - Restricted 
NO more than two deep fried foods (such as chips) will be served per week.
  Healthier Drinks 
We only serve water, pure fruit juices, milk (less than 5% fat) low calorie hot chocolate, coffee and tea (in some schools). We do not serve sweetened fizzy drinks as they have little nutritional value.
  Manufactured Products 
The only manufactured product we serve is fish fingers. We do this because its lack of bones make it a safe choice for children.


If you have any further questions or suggestions, please get in touch and we will respond to your enquiry promptly.


Further Reading:

Department of Health: Healthy Schools Programme 
Assisting schools to adopt a whole-school approach to improving children's health.

The Schools Food Trust 
Established by the Department for Education and Skills in September 2005 to promote the education and health of children and young people and to improve the quality of food in schools.

Teachernet: Healthy Living Blueprint
Helps schools support children in leading a healthy lifestyle.

Department for Education and Skills: School Lunches 
Complements current standards, with advice on offering varied and balanced meals.

Growing Schools
Aims to connect young people with their environment, both urban and rural.

Food in Schools Toolkit 
Tools to support taking a whole-school approach to healthy eating and drinking.

School Fruit and Vegetable Scheme 
Part of the 5-A-DAY programme, aimed at increasing fruit and vegetable consumption.

Food Standards Agency 
Protecting consumer interests and health in relation to food.

Caroline Walker Trust 
Dedicated to the improvement of public health through good food.