A study by The Vegan Society has found that the majority of parents and guardians are in favour of introducing more vegan meals in schools. The results were published to mark International School Meals Day on March 10.
30% of guardians said they would “completely” support the move, while a further 39% said they “somewhat” supported it. This adds up to 69% in favour of increasing the number of nutritionally balanced plant-based meals on offer.
46% of those surveyed wanted to see more alt-meat products offered in schools, while 43% supported more cheese alternatives and 35% wanted to see plant milks offered as an alternative to dairy. Almost half (48%) would like to see more meals containing whole foods such as lentils, and 44% were in favour of adding more fruit-based desserts such as apple crumble.
Vegan meals in schools
Schools worldwide are beginning to add more plant-based meals to their menus. New York City’s school district introduced a Vegan Fridays initiative last month, where plant-based food will be the default option and animal-based meals will only be available on request.
Other schools are introducing meatless options such as plant-based nuggets, while a few — such as Sweden’s Hagaskolan — have even become fully vegan. But these schools are currently in the minority.
“Sadly there are still occasions where vegan or vegan-curious pupils are not sufficiently catered for,” Laura Chepner, Chair of The Vegan Society’s Education Network, told Politics.co.uk. “This is one of the reasons we created the Catering for Everyone campaign, which seeks to mandate at least one plant-based option on all public-sector menus. We’re delighted to be able to publish the results of our latest survey on the 10th anniversary of International School Meals Day!”