SAMOA PARLIAMENT PUSHES HEALTHIER FOOD AT SCHOOL

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Survey shows only 5% of students bring nutritious lunches

WELLINGTON, New Zealand (Radio New Zealand International, Nov. 30, 2011) – The Samoa Parliamentary Group for Healthy Living is spearheading a campaign to have healthy foods in schools.

Led by the Speaker of Parliament, La’aulialemalietoa Leuatea Schmidt, the group has visited several schools to assess the food or lunches students bring from home, and also food sold in school canteens.

The speaker says only 5 percent of students surveyed bring nutritional foods to school.

He also says they noted most of the food sold in school canteens is not healthy and the MPs are encouraging schools to change their approach.

He says the figures show that Samoan children love unhealthy food, making them vulnerable to certain diseases if they don’t watch what they eat.

La’auli says Parliament has a five year strategic plan to monitor the healthy campaign in schools.

[PIR editor’s note: Schmidt also says that some students bring locally-available produce to school, but in town areas, where students have many choices, they choose the unhealthier options. Schmidt has also promised to reinforce and pursue legislation to ensure people are eating healthy.]

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