Eden Foodservice (Eden) was invited to join Brighton and Hove City Council and the Jamie Oliver Foundation to run a Food Education Workshop for Headteachers and school staff from across the city on 17 November.
The workshop, hosted at Jamie’s Italian in Brighton, promoted the fantastic free educational resources available to schools which support curriculum topics around food, nutrition and health.
Promoting health, nutrition and wellbeing within the school community
This workshop was a great opportunity to demonstrate a partnership approach to promoting health and wellbeing within the school environment. At Eden, we work hard to promote a healthy food culture within the schools that we cater for and continuously seek innovative ways to promote health, nutrition and wellbeing within the school community. Engaging with schools, parents, pupils and local authorities is a key aspect of this and enables us to stimulate new ideas about how to inspire pupils to think differently about food and empower them with the skills and knowledge to make healthy choices for themselves.
Sugar intakes need to significantly reduce
The Public Health Team at Brighton and Hove City Council opened the workshop with information about the necessity for food education within schools – with a particular focus on high sugar intakes among school children. Sugar is a topic high on the agenda across the UK in recent months, having been widely discussed across the media following the recently revised recommendations from the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN), who suggest that sugar intakes need to significantly reduce.
Brighton and Hove is the first city to implement a city wide initiative, ‘Sugar Smart City’, to promote awareness of the detrimental effects of high sugar intakes, namely, an increased risk of tooth decay, increased energy intake and obesity. The initiative calls for restaurants and food outlets in the city to sign up to a sugary drinks tax on all soft drinks with added sugar and opens the debate to the community about how else sugar reduction can be encouraged.
Eden reduce sugar by up to 40% in desserts
Eden caters for 60 primary and special schools across Brighton and Hove, so this was a great opportunity for us to communicate our approach to nutrition throughout our recipe development process and the educational workshops that we offer. Eden’s Menu Development Team have recently carried out a major Dessert Review Project which involved a review of over 70 desserts. This yielded some fantastic results, including 40% reduction in free (added) sugars per portion and 16% increase in fibre. I was really pleased to have the opportunity to promote the fantastic results of this project, which I hope will go a long way to reassuring schools and parents that Eden’s food offer supports healthy eating and reflects current guidance.
Educational workshops at the heart of Eden
I also discussed the educational workshops delivered by specialists within our organisation around food, health, growing and cooking. Our qualified Nutritionists and Chefs regularly visit schools carrying out a range of workshops, including fruit and vegetable tasting, practical cooking demonstrations and learning through stories like The Very Hungry Caterpillar. We also offer pupils the opportunity to work alongside our Chefs and Nutritionists to create, test, evaluate and name their own dish for the school menu, as part of our Classroom Cooks initiative.
If you’d like to learn more about Eden and our exciting initiatives please visit www.edenfoodservice.co.uk. We’d also like to hear how you or your family focus on health, nutrition and wellbeing in your own lives – if you have children does what they eat and learn about at school affect this? Share any tips or thoughts below.