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The need for the FiS programme

The FiS Programme will help to ensure children have access to healthy food choices in schools. By introducing this Programme which follows children through the school day, we will lay the foundations to help prevent obesity and disease later in life.

The FiS Programme will also contribute to the priority areas for reducing coronary heart disease, cancer and health inequalities.

The Programme is developing a whole range of nutrition-related activities and projects in schools to complement and add value to the wide variety of other initiatives in schools. The output of the FiS Programme will be of particular value to schools working towards the healthy eating strand of the National Healthy Schools Standard.

The following statistics demonstrate the need for the Food in Schools Programme:

  • 37% of children said they would select healthy foods at school if there was a better choice available and 18% wanted the taste of the healthy food options at school to be improved. (The Sodexho School Meals and Lifestyle Survey 2002)
  • 8% of children have nothing to eat before school, and this rises to 18% for 15-16 year olds and 20% for 15-16 year old girls. (The Sodexho School Meals and Lifestyle Survey 2002)
  • In a typical week 1 in 5 children eat no fruit at all. (National Diet and Nutrition Survey, young people aged 4-18 years 2000)
  • Obesity amongst children is on the increase. (Health Survey for England 2001)
  • It is estimated that 8.5% of 6 year olds and 15% of 15 year old children are obese. (Health Survey for England 2001)
  • 9/10 children are taking food to school that contains too much sugar, salt and saturated fat. (Food Standards Agency Survey October 2003)
  • When we are thirsty mental performance deteriorates by 10%. (Rogers, P et al (2000)
  • 58% of children would like to be taught to cook at school. (The Sodexho School Meals and Lifestyle Survey 2002)




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