Great news for English schoolchildren — 110 primary schools within two local authorities in England have introduced a Meat-Free Monday program and will offer new meat-free meals daily!
These new changes are the result of the School Plates program started by ProVeg UK this summer and will include more vegetables, plant proteins like chickpeas and lentils, as well as plant-based meat alternatives.
Jimmy Pierson, director of ProVeg UK, stated: “We all want children to thrive and these new-look, healthier menus are a big step in the right direction.”
He added, “Eating more plant-based foods is a great way to improve children’s health in the short term – particularly by helping to reduce childhood obesity – and also in the long term by helping to reduce the risk of all kinds of chronic health conditions … It’s so important that children establish healthy eating patterns at an early age, and schools play a key role in this.”
Amy Odene, School Plates manager for ProVeg UK stated: “We are thrilled with the level of interest and engagement so far, and it just goes to show that there is a real appetite for improving the meal provision within schools … When it comes to improving children’s health, helping the planet and saving money all at the same time, there is no better time than now.”
This progressive move by these UK schools falls in alignment with a general trend happening in schools around the world. Here in the U.S., the Meatless Monday campaign implemented at 263 school districts over a five-year time frame resulted in saving over 10 million land animals and reduced greenhouse gas emissions equivalent to driving 1.4 billion miles! And France just instated a new law that requires schools to offer meat-free meals once a week. Additionally, ProVeg UK plans to implement similar programs in Scotland and Northern Ireland. Introducing children to healthier (and more humane) eating habits from an early age is essential to help propel society to a more plant-based future, which is not only good for human health, but for the health of the planet and the livelihood of innocent animals.
To learn more about how going plant-based is the way toward a better world for all, be sure to check out the Eat for the Planet book!
And remember to share this great news as a reminder that the future of food is plant-based!
Image Source: Flickr