Comprehensive food and nutrient-based standards for maintained schools in England became statutory in primary schools from 2008 and secondary schools from 2009. They cover food and drink served at lunchtime, and throughout the school day. This applies to all maintained schools and academies which have compliance with the food standards included in their funding agreements.
The standards cover all food sold or served in schools:
The food-based standards severely restrict foods high in fat, salt and sugar, as well as low quality reformed or reconstituted foods.
The nutrient-based standards stipulate the minimum amounts of essential nutrients, vitamins and minerals and the maximum amounts of fats, salt and sugars that should be provided as part of an average school lunch.
These standards mean that all pupils in local authority-maintained schools who take school lunches have the opportunity to select a healthy meal that contributes to a healthy diet.
The government takes the matter of healthy school meals very seriously. Healthy school food can help to improve children's readiness to learn and their behaviour at school, as well as helping to establish healthy eating habits for life.
Further information about the 2007 legislation and regulation amendments 2008 and 2011.
Provides advice on school food and food skills to improve the quality of food in schools. (Formerly known as the Schools Food Trust).