Eating in school should be a pleasurable experience; time spent sharing good food with peers and teachers.

The new school Food Standards which have been made mandatory since January 2015 are intended to help children develop healthy eating habits and ensure that they get the energy and nutrition they need across the whole school day. It is just as important to cook food that looks good and tastes delicious; to talk to children about what is on offer and recommend dishes; to reduce queuing; and to serve the food in a pleasant environment where they can eat with their friends.

These mandatory standards apply to all food and drink provided to pupils by schools and local authorities, both on the school premises, as well as school trips. This includes breakfast, mid-morning snacks, vending, tuck shops and after school snacks and meals.

The new standards include:

  • One or more portions of vegetables or salad as an accompaniment every day
  • At least three different fruits, and three different vegetables each week
  • An emphasis on wholegrain foods in place of refined carbohydrates
  • An emphasis on making water the drink of choice
  • Limiting fruit juice portions to 150ml
  • Restricting the amount of added sugars or honey in other drinks to five percent
  • No more than two portions a week of food that has been deep-fried, batter-coated or breadcrumb-coated
  • No more than two portions of food which include pastry each week

School Food Standards ‘At a Glance’


Source – Source:
* This Standard applies across the whole school day, including breakfasts, morning breaks, tuck shops, and after school clubs. View PDF HERE