School is back in New Zealand - And so is the junk food

Jennifer Utter*, Robert Scragg, Teuila Percival, Robert Beaglehole

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalEditorialResearchpeer-review

13 Citations (Scopus)


With the Government’s recent decision to remove the healthy food policy for schools,1 schools are now back to (the junk food) business as usual. The sale of junk food by school canteens is a message to children that it is okay to eat junk food. It will also contribute to the current generation of young people facing a lifetime burden of obesity, diabetes and other chronic diseases because of poor nutrition. This will have huge negative impacts on both the health system and the national economy. The 2008 clause in the National Administration Guidelines (NAG) requiring schools to make only healthy foods and beverages available at school2 was a positive step towards ensuring that schools were safe and healthy for children. The healthy food clause meant that New Zealand was leading the way on this issue by providing clear rules on what foods were acceptable and appropriate for children and young people to eat at school.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5-8
Number of pages4
JournalNew Zealand Medical Journal
Issue number1290
Publication statusPublished - 27 Feb 2009
Externally publishedYes


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