Huppert backs TV chef to ensure academies don’t serve junk food
May 22, 2012
Television celebrity chef, Jamie Oliver’s fight to get the government to make sure new academies and free schools don’t serve junk food to their pupils has been backed by Cambridge MP Julian Huppert.
Julian raised the issue with Education Minister, Michael Gove after he received a letter from Jamie and an email from a resident both expressing their concerns.
He has also signed a Commons’ Early Day Motion welcoming Jamie’s campaign and calling on Mr Gove to change the law to make academies and free schools serve food that meets nutritional regulations.
Julian said: “It is vital that our children receive good, nutritional meals, not only to promote healthy living now but also to teach them how to eat well for the future.
“We have children across the country who are obese because of poor diets and lack of exercise. We cannot afford to take any chances that this problem will be compounded by poor nutritional standards in our schools when we have introduced laws to protect against it.
“All schools teaching our children should be bound by the regulations put in place to safeguard the health of pupils in their care; there should be no exceptions.”
Mr Gove told Julian: “Free schools and new academies which have been set up from September 2010 are not required to comply with the school food standards.
“Studies by the School Food Trust now provide good evidence of the benefits of a balanced meal on pupils’ concentration, behaviour and ability to learn. Given this evidence we expect that free schools and academies will still want to promote healthy eating and good nutrition through the provision of high quality lunch services.
“We have asked the School Food Trust to survey the quality of food in a sample of academies in response to concerns raised by Jamie Oliver and we expect the trust to report to us within the next few months.”