Sugar Awareness Week at Dunhurst
After cutting the sugar content in school meals by 50 percent over the last 12 months, Bedales Prep School, Dunhurst marked Sugar Awareness Week with an engaging programme of events for pupils and parents.
The week kicked off on 12 November with a school assembly from Dunhurst’s Head Chef Matt Potts, who quietly reduced the amount of sugar in meals when he joined the school a year ago – and says no one noticed the difference.
Matt has honed a series of recipes, including sticky toffee pudding sweetened with dates and a granola bar made with honey and dried fruit, meaning Dunhurst pupils enjoy nutritionally balanced meals and snacks throughout the school day.
The issue of children’s nutrition is particularly relevant, after figures published earlier this year revealed that one in three 10/11 year-olds are classified as overweight or obese.
Parents were invited to Dunhurst for a coffee morning on 15 November to celebrate Matt’s initiative, where they were able to sample reduced sugar treats over a hot drink, and even take away their favourite recipes that Matt provided for them to replicate at home.
The final event of Sugar Awareness Week saw parents come in for a one-off cookery class where they prepared mini Christmas dinner filled bread rolls with turkey, homemade cranberry and fennel sauce and freshly made sage and onion stuffing, followed by a batch of mince pies topped with a vanilla Viennese biscuit.
Matt, who is committed to reducing sugar content in Dunhurst’s school meals even further, explained: “I introduced the sugar reduction initiative to make a contribution to preventing childhood obesity. The idea is simple yet effective. The general overview is to create recipes using at least half the sugar they would normally contain. This has been rolled out and passed by unnoticed, which tells us many old favourites contain far too much sugar already! It is only the start, and is a clear example that we can all make a difference if we have the desire and will.”
Head of Dunhurst Colin Baty added: “Matt has quietly introduced this approach to catering of school meals for the better health of our pupils now and in the future. It is great we can highlight with parents, pupils and the wider community the excellent work Matt and his team are doing to benefit the pupils and staff at Dunhurst.”