Sunderland City Council has been recognised for the high quality of its school meals, with a ‘Food for Life Served Here’ Bronze Award.

The award, granted by the Soil Association, recognises that the council serves healthy and sustainable meals at primary schools across Sunderland.

With studies showing that almost four million children in the UK don’t have access to healthy food at home, it is increasingly important that children are eating healthy meals in school.

The ‘Food for Life Served Here’ award is given to caterers who serve meals that go beyond meeting the School Food Standards and ensure that children are being served meals that are not only delicious and healthy but also sustainable.

Councillor Louise Farthing, Sunderland City Council’s Cabinet Member for Children, Learning and Skills, said: “We are delighted that our school meals service has once again achieved the Food for Life Served Here Bronze Award. We recognise the important impact that healthy and nutritious school meals can have on the wellbeing and educational development of our children and this award perfectly demonstrates our commitment to this.

“We proud to win an award that recognises the skills of our dedicated team of cooks in producing thousands of fresh and tasty meals daily from high-quality ingredients sustainably sourced from local suppliers.”

Bryn Hamer, Head of Business Development at Food for Life, said: “’ Food for Life Served Here’ caterers is leading the way in improving food culture in schools. Achieving a Food for Life Served Here Award is a fantastic accomplishment and a true reflection of a caterers’ commitment to serving school meals that are nutritious as well as tasty. We know that good food is a crucial part of the school day and with fresh, healthy meals being served, students are equipped with the fuel they need for their learning and development.”

Sunderland City Council’s school meals team serves 11,000 school meals a day across 63 primary schools, with the aim of ensuring as many children as possible can choose a nutritious meal.

All school meals are freshly produced each day, using the highest quality, seasonal ingredients from local suppliers.

To address sustainability, initiatives like non-meat days are in place and all food is ethically sourced from producers that have met high standards of safety, hygiene, animal welfare and the environment.

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