We welcome this consultation and the principles outlined. School meals offer a fantastic opportunity to drive dietary change in Scotland and act as an exemplar for healthy eating. We know that children in Scotland consume foods and drinks high in fat and/or sugar more often than adults. Improving school meals will be an important step in tackling childhood obesity and setting up healthier diets for life.
Just over a year ago Obesity Action Scotland reviewed school menus across Scotland and found the experience varied dramatically. All too often children were offered puddings high in sugar and menus regularly offered processed foods.
Transforming school meals to include more fruit and vegetables, reduce sugar and reduce processed meat are all excellent steps forward.
However, we cannot forget the importance of the dining experience itself and we must ensure the spaces where children and young people eat are the best possible physical and social environments and spaces for them to use.
We have an opportunity to change the dietary patterns and habits of young people across Scotland. We must grasp that opportunity and provide them with excellent food that they enjoy and value and that will help them live long, healthy lives.