Union welcomes free fruit campaign

16 November 2000

Union welcomes free fruit campaign

By FWi staff

EVERY schoolchild up to the age of six is to be given a free piece of fruit each day by 2004 to improve their diet under a new Government initiative.

Health minister Yvette Cooper is to announce the free fruit scheme on Thursday (16 Nov) to tackle concerns that children eat too much fatty food.

Ministers hailed the programme as the biggest shake-up to childrens nutrition since the introduction of free school milk during the First World War.

The National Farmers Union has pledged to do all it can to ensure the scheme is a success and makes full use of UK-grown produce.

NFU vice president Michael Paske said: “This is a hugely exciting project.

“There can be no better way to start healthy eating habits among youngsters
than at school by ensuring they have regular and easy access to fresh fruit.

“We intend to do all we can to help with the development of the scheme and
to ensure that British produce features high on the menu.

We are also working to extend the project to include vegetables and salads in the future.”

Chairman of the NFUs horticulture executive Michael Holmes has been
involved in the planning of the scheme.

He said: “We hope this campaign will prove an all-round winner by increasing the
consumption of British grown produce and in helping to improve the health of
todays youngsters.”

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