Dairy Products, Fruits and Vegetables Will Be Included in the Students' Menu Thanks to an EU Program
The EU School Fruit, Vegetable and Milk Scheme in participating countries of the EU 2019-22020 will be resumed at the beginning of the new school year. The EU School Nutrition Scheme aims to promote a healthy and a balanced diet through the supply of fruits, vegetables and dairy products, as well as through education programs in agriculture and nutrition.
Over 20 million children benefited from this program in the 2017-2018 school year, ie. 20% of children across the European Union.
EU Commissioner for Agriculture and Rural Development Phil Hogan said that it is important the healthy eating habits to be acquired from a young age. He added that “Thanks to the EU School Nutrition Scheme, our young citizens not only enjoy quality European products, but also learn more about nutrition, agriculture, food production, and the hard work involved. " a total of EUR 250 million is earmarked for the scheme. For the 2019-2020 school year, € 145 million is earmarked for fruit and vegetables and € 105 million for milk and dairy products.
Although participation in the scheme is voluntary, all EU Member States have chosen to participate in some part of the scheme or in the whole scheme.
In March 2019, the European Commission approved the funds to be allocated to each EU country participating in the scheme for the coming school year. Countries can supplement the EU grant with national funds. It is up to the Member States to decide how to implement the scheme, ie. what kind of products the children will receive or what topic the educational measures will be introduced. However, products must be selected based on health and environmental factors, as well as their seasonality, variety and availability.
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