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Packed Lunch Policy
This policy was adopted on 6 January 2022 and will be reviewed annually

Policy Statement

Good nutrition in childhood can help to prevent a variety of health problems, both in the short term and later in life. There is increasing concern that many children are consuming too much fat, sugar and salt and too little fibre, fruit and vegetables. Packed lunches can contribute to almost a third of a child’s weekly food intake and therefore need to be balanced and nutritious.
Therefore a Packed Lunch policy has been introduced to the nursery to:
  • Make a positive contribution to children’s health and healthy schools status
  • To encourage a happier and calmer population of children

We will;

  • Provide children bringing packed lunches, with plates, cups and cutlery.
  • We ensure children sit with each other to eat their lunch so that the mealtime is a social occasion for all.
  • We ensure that fresh drinking water is available at all times.
  • We will work with parents to ensure that packed lunches meet the standards listed below.

Guidance for Preparing Packed Lunches

Packed lunches should include:

  • At least one portion of fruit and one portion of vegetables every day.
  • Meat, fish or other source of non-dairy protein (e.g. lentils, kidney beans, chickpeas, hummus, falafel) every day.
  • Oily fish, such as salmon, at least once every three weeks.
  • A starchy food such as any type of bread, pasta, rice, couscous, noodles, potatoes or other type of cereals every day.
  • Dairy food such as milk, cheese, yoghurt, fromage frais or custard everyday.
  • Only water, still or sparkling, fruit juice, milk, yoghurt or milk drinks and smoothies.

Packed lunches should NOT include:

  • Snacks such as crisps (alternatives include: seeds, vegetables and fruit -with no added salt, sugar or fat, savoury crackers or breadsticks served with fruit, vegetables or dairy food).
  • Confectionery: such as chocolate bars, chocolate-coated biscuits and sweets. Cakes or biscuits can be included but encourage your child to eat these only as part of a balanced meal.
  • Pastry/Meat Products: these are high in fat and should only be occasional.
  • Nuts or nut products (although these can be very healthy) because of the danger to other children with allergies.
  • Fizzy drinks: please do not send fizzy drinks into the nursery. Consult labels and try to avoid very sugary drinks e.g. fruit juice drinks where possible.
  • Any foods, which have been fried in oil.

Special diets

  • We recognise that some pupils may have verified medical conditions requiring special diets that do not allow for the standards to be met exactly. In this case, parents are urged to be responsible in ensuring that packed lunches are as healthy as possible

Packed Lunch Containers

  • As fridge space is not available at the nursery, parents/carers are kindly requested to bring packed lunches in insulated bags with freezer blocks, to keep food fresh.

Promotion of Healthy Packed Lunches

There will be ongoing promotion of the need to provide healthy packed lunches through;
  • Home Learning Healthy Packed Lunch recipes posted on Famly.

Monitoring and Evaluation

  • The nursery will carry out monitoring of packed lunch provision: if there are concerns over a child’s food, nutritional intake and/or content of packed lunches, this can be addressed in a timely and sensitive manner. Ofsted are required to report on how the nursery promotes the personal development and wellbeing of all pupils: this may include food provision, including packed lunches brought into nursery.
Additional guidance and advice on providing healthy packed lunches is available from the First Steps Nutrition Trust
Last modified 15d ago