School dinners often healthier than packed lunches

It would take parents almost eight days a year to make packed lunches that meet school food standards.

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The idea of a hot school dinner fills many a parent with dread – memories of lumpy custard and cold gravy have most reaching for sandwiches and the like for their little ones. However, studies carried out by The School Food Trust showed that, on average, 40% of lunchboxes didn’t contain a single piece of fruit or vegetables, compared to only 10% of school dinners that didn’t make the cut.

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Jamie Oliver’s war on unhealthy school meals has seen the nutritional content notably increase over the last couple of years in many school lunches. However, while Jamie was busy stirring it up in the kitchen, many children were happily tucking into snacks brought in from home that actually wouldn’t be allowed past the school gate if it was up to The School Food Trust.

In the 3,500 lunchboxes examined, foods that are high in sugar and salt took the place of much healthier alternatives, with only 58% of the samples containing foodstuffs that could actually count towards the all important 5-a-day.

Packed lunch or school dinner? Let us know what your child’s eating…

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Read more…
•    Children visiting local pub for school dinners 
•    Victoria Beckham steps in as a dinner lady
•    Lunchboxes packed full of sugar and salt

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