Catering staff at East Ayrshire Council are celebrating as they have maintained their Food for Life Served Here gold award for another year, ensuring that pupils in 55 premises in the area continue to enjoy fresh, local and sustainable school meals.
Gold level award holders spend at least 15% of the ingredients budget for their service on organic produce, source a significant proportion of ingredients from UK producers and take further steps to make healthy eating easier.
East Ayrshire Council first achieved the Food for Life Served Here gold award in 2008, and is now serving thousands of fresh, local and sustainable school meals a day. Pupils enjoy meals including homemade soup, pork sausages with creamy mashed potato, chickpea curry and rice, and Scottish salmon stir fry.
Sarah Duley, head of food at Soil Association Scotland, commented, 'This is no mean feat, particularly as the past two years have presented many additional challenges for caterers. Achieving the Food for Life Served Here gold award shows the council’s commitment over many years to providing a fantastic school meal service, especially the catering staff.
“We are delighted to recognise East Ayrshire Council for continuing to deliver freshly prepared, healthy and sustainable food on school plates, prioritising organic produce, and supporting Scottish food producers and suppliers.”
East Ayrshire Council’s development chef Fiona Murray was recently named a Food for Life Scotland Ambassador. She is engaging with pupils, staff and parents through eating workshops, snack cooking sessions and food groups to make healthier snacks the easier choice in schools.
Councillor Graham Barton, East Ayrshire Council’s cabinet spokesperson for children and young people, net zero, environment, climate change and equalities and inclusion, added, “We are committed to continuing to work with local businesses to support the local economy and to reduce our carbon footprint by continuing to source fresh local produce.”