CHIEF MEDICAL OFFICER - REPORT
Dame Sally Davies has released her final report as Chief Medical Officer (CMO) for England.
Here at School Food Matters, we are encouraged to see that Dame Sally has put the right of children to live in a healthy environment and with proper nutrition right at the heart of her report. We also welcome her comments that an excessive focus on weight-loss programmes and treatment, without improving eating habits and taking steps to change the obesogenic environment, will ultimately undermine the effectiveness of those programmes.
Some key recommendations in the report include:
- Extending the Soft Drinks Industry Levy (SDIL) to sweet milk drinks
- Reviewing the Healthy Start Vouchers Scheme to improve uptake and effectiveness
- Identifying ways to improve uptake and delivery of free school meals, and increasing the value of the free school meal allowance to cover the real cost of a healthy meal
- Mandating School Food Standards across all schools (no exceptions), and ensuring robust and independent monitoring systems are in place.
You might recall that monitoring implementation of the School Food Standards was embedded in the School Food Plan - what gets measured gets done - but remains on the government’s to do list. Perhaps this further push from Dame Sally will get the job done.
You can read the full report here.
In other news ...
Public Health England (PHE) reports the Soft Drinks Industry Levy has exceeded its initial target, achieving a 28.8% sugar reduction.