The impact of the Food for Life Partnership

Independent research, summarised in a new report ‘Good food for all’ reveals the success of five years of the Food for Life Partnership. The Partnership is working with over 4,500 schools and communities across England to transform food culture. The evidence from three independent research studies focuses in particular on four main areas of impact: children’s health, tackling inequalities, improving education, and local enterprise and sustainability.


Return of the turkey twizzlerGood food for all

Read about the impact of the Food for Life Partnership in its first five years of funding by the BIG Lottery.
Download our evaluation report  

Hear from Food for Life Partnership schools


Good for improving education

  • More than twice as many FFLP primary schools received an Ofsted rating of outstanding following their participation (37.2% compared to 17.3% outstanding pre-enrolment). Headteachers reported a positive impact on pupil behaviour, attention and attainment.
  • Inspectors have recognised the positive role of FFLP in supporting personal development and wellbeing: 67.1% of schools felt the programme had a clear impact on their Ofsted report in terms of pupils’ personal development and well-being. 

Good for children’s health

  • The programme is associated with changes in eating habits, with an increase in the proportion of primary school-age children reporting eating five portions of fruit or vegetables a day by 5 percentage points to 21% (those reporting eating four or more portions rose by 12 percentage points to 49%). And 45% of parents said the family is eating more vegetables, with 43% switching to healthier and more sustainable choices in the shopping basket.

Good for tackling inequalities

  • Disadvantaged pupils are benefiting: over a two-year period, free school meal take-up went up 13 percentage points in FFLP schools, 20.9% in secondary schools, and by 21% across the board in schools achieving our Silver or Gold award. Nationally, over 20% of primary school pupils and 30% of secondary school pupils eligible for healthy free school meals choose not to eat them for reasons including fear of stigma and the lure of fast food outlets.

Good for local enterprise and sustainability

  • School meal take-up rose by 5 percentage points over two years, making them more cost effective
  • Over £3 in social, economic and environmental value was created for every £1 spent on Food for Life menus, mostly in the form of new jobs in the local economy.

The independent evaluation team:

Commission our workTwice as many schools recieved an Outstanding Ofsted rating after working with the FFLPFree school meal take-up increased by an average of 13% points in FFLP schoolsThe number of children eating 5 or more portions of fruit and veg increased by 28% in FFLP primary schools45 percent of parents report eating more fruit and veg as a result of the FFLP programmeFor every £1 invested in Food for Life menus the social, economic and environmental return on investment for the local authority is £3

The Food for Life Partnership is a network of schools and communities across England committed to transforming food culture. Together we are revolutionising school meals, reconnecting children and young people with where their food comes from, and inspiring families to grow and cook food.

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