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  • Writer's pictureJonathan Roe

School meals can be tasty, healthy, affordable and ethically sourced

Updated: Feb 8, 2023

We are delighted to announce that Thrive Cooperative Learning Trust has achieved the Food for Life Served Here Bronze Award from the Soil Association for serving healthy and sustainable meals at all 9 of our school kitchens.

Studies show that almost four million children are too poor to have a healthy diet, and this is set to increase, and so it is vital that children are eating healthy meals in school. The Food for Life Served Here Award from the Soil Association recognises caterers who are serving meals that go beyond meeting the School Food Standards and ensure that children are being served meals that are not only delicious but also good for health, nature and our climate.

Parents can be assured that meals served to pupils in Food for Life Served Here certified schools are prepared from fresh ingredients meeting high standards which have been inspected and awarded by Food for Life.

Ruth Galpine, Associate Director, Healthy and Sustainable Diets said: ‘Food for Life Served Here caterers are leading the way in improving food culture in schools. Achieving a Food for Life Served Here Award is a fantastic accomplishment and a true reflection of a caterers’ commitment to serving school meals that are nutritious as well as tasty. We know that good food is a crucial part of the school day and with fresh, healthy meals being served, students are equipped with the fuel they need for their learning and development.’

Below is a brief overview of Food for Life Served Here bronze standard :

  • Meals contain no undesirable food additives or hydrogenated fats

  • 75% of dishes are freshly prepared

  • Meat is from farms which satisfy UK welfare standards

  • Eggs are from cage-free hens

  • Menus are seasonal

  • Training is provided for all catering staff

  • No GM ingredients are used

  • Free drinking water is available

  • No endangered fish are served

  • Information about where the food has come from is on display

  • Suppliers meet food safety standards

  • School caterers meet government guidelines for food and nutrition

Tracy Palmer, Catering Operation Manager at Thrive said, ‘At Thrive we are committed to serving meals to all our children that are nutritious, healthy and responsibly produced. We are extremely proud to achieve the Bronze Food for Life Here Award in recognition of the work that goes into our school catering service.’

Jonathan Roe CEO of Thrive added, ‘Our catering teams across all schools do a fantastic job to make the food we offer affordable, nutritious and ethically sourced. This all feeds in to our dream of being a net carbon zero shool trust. Congratulations to Tracy Palmer and Stuart Carrington for running our school catering so well.’

To find out more on the soil association and the Food for Life Served Here please visit

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