Call on candidates to transform school meals

Obesity Action Scotland is calling for action on school meals.

Obesity Action Scotland is calling for action on school meals.

Obesity Action Scotland is calling on local government election candidates to commit to transform school meals in Scotland from a feeding culture to an eating culture.

The body is asking national and local governments to place greater value on school meals and create an

eating culture by: Using unprocessed or minimally processed foods wherever possible; Prioritising vegetables, soup and salads over puddings; Reducing free sugar content towards meeting Scottish Dietary Goals and Creating a positive physical and social environment for school meals.

Two thirds of primary school pupils in Scotland eat school meals. School meals provide a unique

opportunity to drive the dietary change we need to see in Scotland and act as an exemplar for

healthy eating.

Obesity affects one in every four adults and almost one in five children in Scotland. People who are

normal weight are now in the minority and poor diet is a key driver of this.

Obesity Action Scotland’s report, launched today (Thursday), found that the school dining experience varies dramatically across Scotland and the organisation is seeking change to ensure no school or child is left behind. All too often children are offered puddings high in sugar and menus regularly offer processed foods.

Lorraine Tulloch, programme leader of Obesity Action Scotland, said: “We found that Scottish primary schools serve puddings more often that soup and these puddings have an average of 14g of sugar.

“We are calling on local government election candidates to commit to transform school meals across

Scotland to ensure children have a healthy and happy experience with food. Change is possible and we have highlighted areas where that change is starting to happen, but more action is needed and greater priority and

attention needs to be given to this subject to ensure we offer all our children the best start in life.”