Spotlight on Food Education

Food and drink companies have a legal obligation to tell their customers what is in their food, and ingredients lists and nutrition information are both clearly provided on pack.

However many companies go much further than the legal requirements in helping people to understand what is in their food.

At its simplest this means the vast majority of companies provide a simplified version of nutrition information on the front of pack. Our members also provide healthy eating information on websites and try to help amplify public health messages, with over two thirds of FDF's largest members supporting Change4Life.

Providing information is a vital first step, but some companies go much further by supporting school and community intervention programmes, which aim to help people understand what a healthy balanced diet is and help them see how they can achieve it.

Schools

Eat Like A ChampEat Like A Champ (ELAC) is a healthy eating educational programme designed for Y5 primary schools children aged 9-10, developed by Danone with the British Nutrition Foundation. The aim is to tackle the growing issue of poor nutrition and obesity amongst children through six specially tailored lessons. The concept is to make nutrition exciting for kids and inspire them to adopt healthy choices of champions they admire.

  • ELAC launched as a pilot in 25 London classes in 2010, and has grown each year. In 2014, it was rolled out to 1,000 classes all over the UK, reaching over 30,000 children.
  • Independent research carried out by the Children's Food Trust demonstrates that children taking part in ELAC shifted behaviour towards healthier eating habits.
  • We have put a particular focus on our local community in Ealing, where 80% of primary schools have taken part.

Families

Ben's BeginnersBen's Beginners is a global initiative from UNCLE BEN'S aimed at getting kids and families cooking together and having fun while developing a lifelong good relationship with food. In the UK, the Ben's Beginners initiative is an online cooking channel which aims to put the fun into learning how to cook and teach skills that will last a lifetime.

Since the launch of the online cooking channel:

  • 3.3 million cooking lessons have been delivered
  • *30% of people who have engaged with the content claim they will change their cooking habits.
  • *97k families intend to cook together more often

* Nielsen research conducted on control and exposed cells to measure claimed behaviour change

Healthcare Professionals

Food and Drink Labelling BookletFDF wanted to help health care professionals understand the changes being made to food labels. We developed an easy to use booklet highlighting changes along with examples of how the labels can be used to help make healthier choices. The booklet focuses on reference intakes, nutrition information, ingredients and allergen labelling. Before publication we gained positive feedback from all relevant UK Government departments.

  • The booklet has been downloaded more than 10,000 times,
  • We have distributed 12,000 free copies and written supporting articles in journals targeting dietitians, nurses and nutritionists.
  • Building on this work, in December 2014 we launched www.foodlabel.org.uk a consumer facing website which receives approximately 20,000 hits a month

Next page: Changing Recipes for Health


Last reviewed: 06 Jul 2015