Newcastle nursery named the best in the UK
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The youngsters at Childsplay Claremont were celebrating after the nursery was named the winner of the very first Nursery Food Awards. The nursery, which has been running since 1982, makes sure all its food is organic, apart from fish, which is locally sourced. Despite being based in the heart of the city, the nursery also tries to teach its children about growing food – they are developing a vegetable patch to grow their own vegetables and are introducing a compost bin so the children can learn about recycling. (Picture: Soil Association)
The awards, which are the first of their kind, were run by pioneering food company Organix, in partnership with the Soil Association, following on from their successful School Food Awards, and supported by Hobart and Nursery World magazine. The two runners-up were Willow Cottage Nursery in Oxford and Little Monkey’s Nursery in Windsor, who each got £500 of Hobart kitchen equipment, while the entirely vegetarian nursery at the University of East Anglia in Norwich scooped the Organix Nursery Cookbook Prize for submitting the best recipes, and will have their recipes published in a book.
Over a million children in the UK attend nurseries, aged between three months and five years. According to Peter Melchett, Policy Director at the Soil Association, nurseries can play a vital role in helping parents familiarise young children with fresh, healthy food and where good food comes from. Too many of today's children were growing up thinking that food was something plastic-wrapped that came from a supermarket. Over the coming months, Organix and the Soil Association will be carrying out a report into the state of nutrition in UK nurseries.
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