No-deal Brexit threatens school food

School food plan alliance

School food standards are under threat by a no-deal Brexit, say council planning documents seen by the BBC.

Local councils are anticipating that a rise in food prices and restriction of fresh food imports from Europe will mean more expensive school meals made with tinned and frozen ingredients. Some councils say that this means they will no longer be able to meet school food standards.

Rob Percival, Head of Policy, Food and Health, said, "It's likely that a no-deal Brexit would be a disaster for school meals and would pose a threat to the health of some of the most vulnerable in society.

"The Government must put contingency plans in place to ensure that in the event of major disruption to food supplies there are no negative impacts on child health. This means that the nutritional and quality standards for school food must be maintained.

"A ring-fenced budget should be made available to support schools and caterers to maintain the quality of school meals. This funding should be used to avoid the slippery slope wherein hot meals are replaced by cold meals, or fresh produce by tinned foods.

"For many children living in poverty, a hot and high-quality school meal is their only meal of the day. This vital nutritional safety net must not be sacrificed on the altar on a no-deal Brexit."

Our Food for Life Served Here accreditation awards caterers who are committed to using honest, seasonal and local produce. We support caterers to set children up for the day with nutritious, home-cooked meals.

Join us in calling on Boris Johnson to guarantee healthy school meals for kids who need them.