Queensland schools join garden scheme

Queensland primary schools will be taking a healthier approach to lunchtime meals with a nationwide kitchen garden program to be adopted by 25 schools next month.

The successful program run by author and cook Stephanie Alexander has had positive results in 193 schools across Australia since 2001.

Last year the program won the Premier’s Design Awards for economic, environmental and social initiatives.

Kitchen Garden schools is an innovative idea where kitchen and garden classes are run weekly, enabling skills-based learning extending across the entire school curriculum.

Children spend time in a productive veggie garden and home-style kitchen each and every week, growing, harvesting and preparing fresh fruit and vegetables.

However Dieticians Association of Australia spokeswoman Julie Gilbert said more still needed to be done to achieve a healthier Queensland.

“While it’s a great way to expose children to understanding more about how food is grown and prepared and that food doesn’t come packaged, people can’t just think it’s going to solve the obesity problem,” Ms Gilbert said.

“It’s a big issue and this is just another step in a much bigger process.”

Education Minister Cameron Dick said in a recent media statement the Queensland Government’s $1.8 million investment in developing healthier eating habits for primary age children would help to tackle the bigger issues.

“This program not only teaches students how to create nutritious and delicious meals, but equips them with healthy living skills for life,” Mr Dick said.

“It’s making a big difference to the lives of not only students, but also their families, with Queensland children taking their healthy habits home.”

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