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Healthy meals are free for a week at Bury schools
CHILDREN starting school this week will be able to try out more than just their new surroundings.
For all new reception class children at schools around the borough have the chance to try school meals free for one week during the first term.
They will be able to take a taste of some of the 60,000kg of potatoes, 25,000kg of chicken, 16,000kg of salad and 110,000 portions of fresh fruit served in the first term alone by catering staff.
Bury School Catering Service provides 14,000 healthy and nutritional meals to more than 70 schools around the borough.
Cllr Gill Campbell, Bury Council’s cabinet member for children and families, said: “School meals offer good value.
“They also offer parents a convenient way to encourage their children to try new foods, increase the variety of foods in their diet and influence their long-term eating habits.
“Many studies show that school meals are almost always healthier than packed lunches and, while it is possible to make up a nutritionally balanced packed lunch, this does take considerable effort and can cost much more than a school meal.
“I’m sure any parent knows only too well how precious those extra minutes in the morning can be.
“As well as providing great tasty meals at a low cost, our catering service has been improving how meals are paid for too.
“Now parents can pay over the internet or by phone, which means there’s no cash to find, no cheques to write, and the service is available 24/7.”
School meals are required to meet strict standards and must be free from artificial colourings, preservatives and flavourings as well as being low in salt.
Chips are on the menu no more than once a week and only free range eggs are used.
Fresh fruit, vegetables and meat are all sourced locally where possible.
The meals cost £1.95 each at primary schools and £2.05 at secondary schools.
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