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buzzsaw_23 Donating Member (631 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 06:35 AM
Original message
Schools Will Ban Junk Food, says Kelly
Schools will ban junk food, says Kelly

By Tim Ross, PA

Published:28 September 2005


Junk food will be banned from school canteens and vending machines, Education Secretary Ruth Kelly will announce today.

Sweets, chocolates and fizzy drinks will not be available anywhere in schools in the drive to end the "scandal" of children on junk food diets, she will say.

The minister will say cheap burgers and sausages must be banned from canteen menus and new nutritional standards will be brought in for all school food from September 2006.

Under the plans, which are expected to require new laws, vending machines will have to stock items such as milk, bottled water and fresh fruit instead.

http://news.independent.co.uk/uk/politics/article315605...
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LiberalinNC Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 06:53 AM
Response to Original message
1. The U.S. could learn from this!!
JMO!
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fredtaylor Donating Member (46 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 07:55 AM
Response to Reply #1
5. Good call!
But apparently it's big bucks for the school system paid by Pepsi or Coke to have their products in schools. Stupid!
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muriel_volestrangler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 07:13 AM
Response to Original message
2. The proof of the pudding is in the eating
so to speak. Wait and see what the government has to do about the private contractors who provide the food in much of the country's schools:

The school meals revolution set in motion by celebrity chef Jamie Oliver has already run into difficulties as long-term contracts with private companies prevent schools getting rid of junk food.

The Guardian has learned that new schools locked into 25-year contracts through private finance initiatives are finding that they cannot rid their menus of junk food despite the government's pledge.

Other schools are also running into problems as they discover that they face substantial financial penalties if they try to opt out of long-running contracts with private catering companies.
...
Where PFI contractors have built profits from vending machines in schools into their contracts, the Department for Education and Skills has admitted that any loss suffered by removing them might be passed back to the schools.

http://politics.guardian.co.uk/election/story/0,15803,1...


So, wait and see what the government's new laws do about this. Will they tell their favourite PFI companies "sorry, you're not going to get that fat profit you were expecting from selling junk food"? Or will they give them the money anyway, thus increasing the non-education costs of running our schools (which would, inevitably, be spun by them as 'investing in children')?

This is one of the fundamental problems with the Private Finance Initiative. The government signs over so many rights to private companies that any change you require in the next 25 years has to be paid for at exorbitant rates. It's not "selling the family silver", it's "selling the everyday cutlery that you need to use".
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tjwmason Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 01:10 PM
Response to Reply #2
11. You don't mean that this is just another head-line grab by the Blair gov't
I can't believe that fauxLabour would just invent a policy off the top of their heads and announce it without first considering the implementation of it - that would just be so out of character.

For the record, I fully support the policy - at my school until the XVIth form the only drinks that could be purloined outside the lunch-break were from the Coke machine; in the XVIth form tea and coffee were also available. We're raising a generation of refined sugar and fat adicts - I can foresee immense health problems just around the corner.
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muriel_volestrangler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 06:05 PM
Response to Reply #11
15. The sixteenth form?
They must have really been thorough to keep you for 16 years ... :evilgrin:

Yeah, so uncharacteristic of Labour to not plan things out, isn't it?
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RogueTrooper Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-29-05 07:40 AM
Response to Reply #2
17. Who's lootin who?
Most Merton secondary schools are locked into a 25-year PFI contract with a company called New Schools. It has subcontracted all services for 25 years to Atkins Asset Management. Atkins has subcontracted again, giving a 25-year catering contract for the schools to Scolarest catering.

:wtf:
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muriel_volestrangler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-29-05 08:25 AM
Response to Reply #17
18. Probably more commercial lawyers than cooks involved (n/t)
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T_i_B Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 07:17 AM
Response to Original message
3. However much I may detest seeing Jamie Oliver on my TV screen...
...he is actually very good at politics. I distinctly remember seeing him on an anti-war march once, he is involved with the campaign to stop the expansion of Stanstead Airport in Essex and he is the man who has spearheaded the campaign to get junk food out of schools, even though he is a dodgy TV chef.
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Carni Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 07:38 AM
Response to Original message
4. I thought this was happening in the US--how disappointing!
As a parent it's irritating as hell to take the time to prepare elaborate meals made all from scratch for my kid... only to find out she could go to school and gobble up high fructose corn syrup at her whim.

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donco6 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 08:42 AM
Response to Original message
6. If it did happen in the US, we'd be crucified.
And do you know who would be nailing us to the cross? Parents! For every call we get about food that's too high in fat, I get three or four calls about how the portions are too small, there's not enough "good stuff" (i.e., cheese, butter, hamburger, tacos, burritos, pizza). Our portions are measured to provide a certain number of calories over a week, with less than 30% of those calories from fat (try that when you're REQUIRED to provide milk with every meal!) But it's not less fat our parents want - they want MORE!

We took regular chips and candy out of our vending, and the parents showed up at a board meeting wanting them put back in. One parent testified how her kid eats a Snickers with pop every day for lunch, and that seemed OK with her.

So what do we do?
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non sociopath skin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 12:07 PM
Response to Reply #6
10. I remember it well when I was teaching!
Boy, did those e-numbers make more lively afternoons with my Special Needs kids.

The Skin
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VLC98 Donating Member (398 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 08:56 AM
Response to Original message
7. Sad how times have changed.
When I went to school in England, in the 70's and 80's, going to the "tuck shop" was an everyday treat and there were very few overweight children. We didn't have much money to spend, so that helped restrict our calorie intake, but more importantly, just about everyone walked or biked to school.
Now I know I'm getting old, reminiscing about the "good old days".
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non sociopath skin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 09:30 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. Fair number of fatties in my Grammar School in the 60s I recollect.
School dinners were wall-to-wall stodge (think it was the slammer syndrome - the heavier the meals, the less the aggro)and everyone pigged out, given the chance, on pop, crisps, chips and "bullets" (that's sweets/candy to the uninitiated). Took a helluva lotta walking and biking to burn off that lot!

:popcorn: :popcorn: :popcorn: :popcorn: :popcorn:

The Skin
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VLC98 Donating Member (398 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 11:15 AM
Response to Reply #8
9. Perhaps I just didn't notice the "fatties"..
probably too busy ogling the boys playing football. At primary school in the mid 70's I do remember a lot of stodgy food, like spotted dick and bread & butter pudding. There was a boy called Dominic that would eat about 7 helpings of the latter, because so many kids hated it, and he was skinny. My school was a mile and a half from my house, enough to keep me slim in those days, and I usually stopped at the sweet shop on the way home for rhubarb and custards or sherbet pips!
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fedsron2us Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 03:25 PM
Response to Reply #7
12. Good old days ?
Edited on Wed Sep-28-05 03:29 PM by fedsron2us
My memories of school food from the 1960s and early 1970s was that the cooks had derived their recipes from Stalin's gulag. Greasy meat; foully bitter cabbage; blotchy eyed potatoes and gravy that had a skin on it so thick you could actually turn the jug upside down without it coming out. Occasionally this dire fare was varied with portions of baked beans that had the same consistency as armoured piercing rounds. The desserts were no better. I still have nightmares about the steamed pudding that oozed water whenever the top was pressed and the hideous, luminous pink custard that they insisted on serving with it. Frankly given the choice I would have preferred modern junk food. Whenever I think about my school meals I end up whispering to myself - the horror, the horror.
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VLC98 Donating Member (398 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 06:02 PM
Response to Reply #12
14. Now you mention it...
I can remember fish with massive bones that I was forced to finish, liver with tubes in, mashed potatoes with black lumps, roast potatoes that the dinner lady had to cut they were so tough and banana custard where the banana had disintegrated to mush. That was all at primary school. At high school they got their act together AND there were choices, which was wonderful for vegetarians like myself.
Now American school lunches are really something else! My kids would rather starve than eat them, so muggins has to make sandwiches at 6am.
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non sociopath skin Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-29-05 03:02 AM
Response to Reply #14
16. I still have nightmares about fish pie.
Surely no-one ever REALLY thought it was a good idea?

:puke:

The Skin
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Monkey see Monkey Do Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 03:52 PM
Response to Original message
13. I'm currently reading
"What a Carve Up!" by Jonathan Coe and just came by the following on Thatchers plan to scrap free school meals - (spoken by a Tory):



'Well, there'll be an outcry, of course, but then it'll die down and something else will come along for people to get annoyed about. The important thing is that we save ourselves a lot of money, and meanwhile a whole generation of children from working-class or low-income families will be eating nothing but crisps and chocolate every day. Which means, in the end, that they'll grow up physically weaker and mentally slower.' Dorothy raised an eyebrow at this assertion. 'Oh, yes,' he assured her. 'A diet high in sugars leads to retarded brain growth. Our chaps have proved it.' He smiled. 'As every general knows, the secret of winning any war is to demoralize the enemy.' (p254)
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