Hospital food review

The government has announced it will review hospital food. Working with the NHS, the ‘root and branch’ review will aim to improve food quality in hospitals and ensure all meals served are healthy, nutritious and tasty.

Food for Life has supported over 70 NHS hospitals, trusts and health boards across the UK to provide food they can be proud of. With the Food for Life Served Here accreditation, we are already working with caterers all over the country to ensure that meals delivered to hospital patients, staff and visitors are healthy, nutritious and sustainable. We know that a heathy diet is vital to recovery, and support caterers to provide meals that patients want to eat and will aid their recovery.

Rob Percival, Head of Policy, Food and Health, said, “This review is hugely welcome. Every hospital should be serving fresh, healthy and sustainable meals, and the buying power of the NHS should be harnessed towards environmentally sustainable food production.

“Previous government reviews of hospital food have failed because they have lacked legislative weight. This review must ensure that standards are embedded in legislation, that there is meaningful monitoring of compliance, and penalties for non-compliance.

“Leading NHS Trusts working with the Food for Life programme are already showing that healthy, sustainable and high-quality meals can be served on a tight budget. This review must ensure that good food is at the heart of the NHS and consistently available in every hospital.”

The review will bring in support from experts including the Soil Association to improve local food sourcing and reduce the need for frozen or pre-packaged foods. It will also focus on the sustainability and environmental impact of the whole supply chain.

Read more about the work Food for Life have been doing to improve hospital catering.