School Fruit and Vegetable Scheme to Resume!
In welcome news for school food campaigners, the Government has confirmed the School Fruit and Vegetable Scheme will be returning.
The School Fruit and Vegetable Scheme (SFVS) provides a free piece of fruit or veg to every 4-6 year-old who attends a fully state-funded primary, infant or special school - roughly 450 million pieces of fruit a year to 2.3 million children.
The SFVS had been suspended since March when schools were closed to all but key and essential workers’ children and vulnerable children. The Department of Health & Social Care (DHSC) claimed this was to prevent food waste, but provided very little information about plans to resume it.
In a tweet, Jo Churchill MP, the Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Care) said “The school fruit and vegetable scheme will resume as normal in Autumn when all children return to school, providing daily fresh produce for pupils and helping every child have a healthy start to life.”
Stephanie Wood, SFM’s Founder/CEO said: “This is happy news for children, parents and teachers who have seen the benefit of the School Fruit and Veg Scheme on children’s health and eating habits. Now it’s time to extend the programme to all primary school children and ensure that they’re getting the best quality seasonal British produce. This supports both our children and our farmers - what an excellent win win!”
In other news ...
The National Audit Office (NAO) has published a report evaluating progress made on childhood obesity
New research from Children's Food Campaign and Food Active has revealed 9 in 10 parents would support the Government reviewing and expanding eligibility for free school meals to all children living in very low-income and food insecure families.