NEWS: “Healthier” NSW school canteens still allow chips, cake + diet soft drink

By Rachel O'Regan |

Keys2words – NEWS: “Healthier” NSW school canteens still allow chips, cake and diet soft drink

  • The NSW Government has FINALLY released its …
  • … but problematic foods like cakes, chips, diet soft drink and margarine are still allowed.
  • With , we need to try harder.

After much campaigning at our end, the NSW Government has finally revealed its . But it’s not quite the result we were hoping for.

The new criteria, based on the flawed Health Star Rating system, still recommends low-fat dairy, vegetable oil and margarine. These “light” options are often chemically processed, potentially inflammatory and can contain a raft of weird ingredients. What’s wrong with butter?

Even worse are the “occasional” foods (which should be at least 3.5 Health Stars). We understand they should only comprise ¼ of the menu and can’t be promoted in school… but what’s stopping kids from buying hot chips and cake every day if they can?

“There is no clear indication of how implementation is to be monitored,” says registered nutritionist and healthy schools campaigner .

“We learnt from the last guidelines that if schools are left to self-regulation then implementation will fail, along with it the hopes and dreams of this policy.”

Granted, there are some good points – fresh food is a focus, and sugary drinks are still banned (except for “small amounts” of pure juice and flavoured milk).

We just can’t avoid issues, like the allowance of diet soft drinks, which set back the entire strategy. (You can .)

We need tough canteens that don’t “limit” junk food in schools, but ban it outright. And you can bet we’ll continue to fight for it!

Are you happy with the new NSW school canteens guideline, or do you think they need to be stricter?

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