Attitudes to school food need to shift from it being a drain on finances to a vital investment in child health, Naomi Duncan, our Chief Executive, made clear to the House of Lords Food Obesity Committee at a hearing on March 7th.

Naomi was part of an expert panel featuring  Georgie Branch, Programme Lead, Healthy Zones team, School Food Matters; Bee Wilson, writer and co-founder of TastEd, and Anita Brown, Local Authority Catering Association (LACA) who all talked about the importance of food education and school food.

Naomi started her evidence by asking the panel to think about one statement:

1 in 3 kids in the poorest areas in this country are leaving primary schools with obesity. 

Naomi presented solutions: 

  • Enforce and strengthen the existing school food standards
  • Train all school kitchen teams on child nutrition, culinary skills & the school food standards
  • Provide sufficient funding to ensure only quality produce is served in schools and that every child accesses and enjoys a school lunch.

Naomi told the committee that a holistic approach is needed in schools and that if we talk about nutrition in the classroom, the school food offering must match up.

Speaking afterwards, Naomi said: “I am honoured to have given evidence, now we need ambitious recommendations from the committee that match the scale of the issue at hand. Regulation alone isn’t enough. Funding alone isn’t everything. We need a workforce that is empowered, supported and properly trained.”

Watch the Committee Hearing in Full Here: