Schools' efforts to manage rise of diabetes

Published Date: 02 October 2017 12:00 AM

News Parliamentary Replies

Name and Constituency of Member of Parliament

Mr Darryl David, Ang Mo Kio GRC

Question

To ask the Minister for Education (Schools) what measures are being taken, and what else is being planned, to ensure that the food served to students in our schools is in line with the Ministry’s overall strategy to manage the rise of diabetes among our population.

Response

1. Since 2014, MOE and the Health Promotion Board (HPB) have worked closely with schools to serve healthy meals as part of the Healthy Meals in Schools Programme (HMSP). Under the Programme, school canteens serve set meals which are lower in fat, sugar and salt, and incorporate food from the four main food groups – whole grains, meat, vegetables and fruits – and lower sugar beverages, which contain no more than 6g of added sugar per 100 ml. Since January 2017, all mainstream schools have come on board to implement this Programme.

2. All canteen stallholders in schools attend the training commissioned by HPB on the use of healthier ingredients and healthier food preparation methods. The training involves nutrition education, where the food service guidelines are explained by a nutritionist, on food preparation, where a chef demonstrates and provides tips on how popular dishes can be prepared more healthily, and a hands-on segment for canteen vendors to put into practice the knowledge learned. With this training, our school canteen stallholders are well placed to deliver healthy food to the students. Enhancements to the training are being made to include elements of taste, appearance and cost management to further improve the skills of the canteen stallholders.

3. HPB also conducts assessments for all schools annually to ensure that the food and beverages served at school canteens and vending machines meet the guidelines. A report is provided to the school after each assessment to help canteen stallholders better meet the guidelines.

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