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New campaign encourages healthy children's meals in restaurants

20 | 05 | 13

A new campaign has launched to encourage more restaurants to serve healthier meals for children.

Organic baby food company Organix and the Soil Association have created the 'Out to Lunch' project to promote better choices for youngsters when eating out. 

"Going to restaurants is a regular part of children’s lives and the industry has a role to play when it comes to educating children about food. What they eat at a young age will impact what they’ll choose and prefer later in life," commented Anna Rosier, managing director at Organix.

As part of the campaign, a group of parents are currently reviewing 21 restaurant chains and reporting back on the experience of eating out with their children and the quality of the meals that were on offer. 

Amy Leech of the Soil Association - a membership charity that campaigns for 'planet-friendly' food and farming - stated: "With one in three children leaving primary school overweight or obese, it’s widely agreed this problem needs tackling from all angles. 

"We want to see healthy, traceable food on the menu for children in restaurants, not just the usual suspects with chips."

She added that the findings of the parents' research will be released in July and the campaign will work alongside restaurants to make changes to their children's menus.

The results of the Out to Lunch campaign will be of interest to kitchen and catering equipment companies as if restaurants change the type of meals they offer, this could affect the type of equipment they order. 

Earlier this year, research by Horizons found that both snacks and the breakfast market are becoming increasingly important to the eating-out sector and this too could have an impact on the catering equipment restaurants require. 

Snacks accounted for 22 per cent of the £32.8 billion worth of food sales in 2012 and breakfast made up nine per cent of the market - up from 4.4 per cent in 2011. 

Peter Backman, Horizons managing director, said this was a result of more people adopting a faster and more casual approach to eating out.ADNFCR-16001031-ID-801587514-ADNFCR

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