Appetite for Life
What is Appetite for Life?
Appetite for Life is the Welsh Assembly Government’s plan for improving the food and drink provided in schools in Wales. It sets new food, drink and nutrient standards that mean food provided in school will be healthy and well balanced and snack foods and drinks with little or no nutritional value will not be available.
The food and drink based standards apply across the school day including breakfast clubs, mid-morning break, tuck shops, vending machines, lunch time provision and after school clubs. The nutrient based standards apply to the food served at lunch times.
What are the "nutrient based standards?"
The nutrient based standards list a maximum amount of fat, saturated fat, added sugars and salt and minimum amount for vitamins and minerals for an average school lunch. There are also calorie limits which mean that the average school lunch contains energy which is right for the needs of children and young people.
All the food provided by Shire Services at Ysgol Emrys ap Iwan is nutritionally analysed against the nutrient based standards to ensure your child can choose from a healthy balanced variety of foods at lunch time.
What sort of foods will be on offer?
Although there are some restrictions, a large variety of foods including desserts can still be served under Appetite for Life recommendations.
The lunch time provision is generally planned in advance and menus showing the meals that your child can choose should be available from the school or here.
Most secondary schools offer a wide range of options such as traditional hot dishes and meal deals – generally offering good value for money, salad bars, and jacket potatoes with fillings, sandwiches, baguettes, rolls and healthy drinks.
Can my child still have a snack at break time?
Yes, snacks should still be available in schools but individual school policies will vary. Appetite for Life recommends that food and drinks served across the school day must have a clear nutritional benefit.
In secondary schools, recommended break time snacks include bread products, fruit, vegetables, and yoghurts. Fizzy drinks high in added sugars and sweeteners are being replaced with plain water, milk and fruit juice drinks.
Many schools are working together with the Welsh National Healthy Schools Scheme to promote fruit and vegetable snacks and encourage water drinking.
My child isn't sure that they will like the food on offer on the new menu?
At Emrys ap Iwan, Shire Services offer taster portions of new foods at lunchtimes for learners to try to help establish new favourites. Taster sessions are also planned throughout the year for learners to try new foods. Taster sessions are also held as appropriate for parents to see and try the new foods on offer. Contact the school for more information on planned taster sessions. The school also has an active SNAG (School Nutrition Action Group) which is a group made up of learners who plan, prepare and serve free tasters of foods from the menu for tasting once each half term. Both the SNAG group and the School Council work closely with Shire Services and the Leadership Group to ensure that learner voice is taken into consideration.
Want to know more about school meals?
See here for updated menus or contact Mrs Gill Porter (Restaurant Manager) or Mrs Sue Nichols (Deputy Head) if you require more details.
The 'Appetite for Life Action Plan' can be downloaded from the Welsh Assembly Government website and more information on the recommended guidelines for food, drink and nutrient based standards can be found on the school meal pages of the Physical Activity and Nutrition Networks Wales website.
If you think your child may be eligible for free school meals, contact the school office to find out more information.