How much of a say should parents have in what food nurseries serve?

How much of a say should parents have in what food nurseries serve?

Parents are fiercely debating the topic of nursery menus and how much of a say they should get in the dishes they’re consuming for lunch and snacks. The discussions were ignited after one mother revealed that a nursery had swapped to a vegan menu without consulting parents first. Raw Labels is warning that nurseries need to proceed carefully when they want to embrace such a radical dietary overhaul.

The nursery in question, which hasn’t been named, reportedly emailed parents to say changes to the food menu had been made, with all animal products being removed entirely. While the change brings up issues of nutrition for children and the right the parents have to choose the lifestyle options of their children, they key problem stems from a lack of communication. The mother in question hadn’t been involved in the discussions or been asked for prior consent.

Sven Miller, Sales Manager of Raw Labels, said, “It’s a tricky situation for nurseries to navigate, as there are more and more alternative dietary requirements to consider, from veganism to allergies. From their perspective, having a vegan menu that all the children can eat from certainly makes meal times simpler.

“However, in this instance, it looks like they’ve failed to judge the parent reaction and include them in the process.  Ensuring children get the right nutrition is vitally important, so it should be no surprise that parents are concerned about some food products being cut out of certain meal times. It would have been a wise decision to contact parents beforehand to go through the changes and why they’re happening, highlighting how it’ll still provide all the nutrients their children need. There may still have been some objections, but a better process would have allowed these to be addressed effectively.”

The nursery debate menu has received support on both sides, with some parents arguing they wouldn’t be happy if the decision had been made by their caregivers, while others have pointed out that many children only have one meal a day at nursery, allowing them still to eat meat, fish, and other animal products if their parents choose.

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