Every Finnish child is entitled to a free daily school meal in both primary and secondary schools. Finland was the first country in the world to serve free school meals, and it is a world leader in nutritional expertise.
JAMK University of Applied Sciences offers training and consulting for school meal developers.
Finland – world leader in nutritional expertise
Every Finnish child is entitled to a free daily school meal in both primary and secondary schools. Finland began providing free school meals 70 years ago, and it has been a success story ever since. The Finnish school meal system both encourages children to attend school and helps them to learn.
Health and well-being through qualitative food education
School meals are free for every child between 6-16 years. Finland was the first country in the world to serve free school meals, and it is a world leader in nutritional expertise. Providing free school meals became mandatory for municipalities in 1948. In Finland, health and well-being are built through qualitative food education.
The free school lunches, as well as lessons in home economics, encourage children to follow a balanced diet. The knowledge on food gained as a child helps one to make good nutritional decisions also later.
Every school makes an action plan for food education
Global challenges in food production calls for growing consideration on environmental and ethical issues. Finnish food education is integrated into the early childhood education plan. During the comprehensive school children learn the basics about the Finnish food culture and food education. School meals and food education are defined in the comprehensive school curriculum. Every school makes an action plan for food education individually taking into acount health, nutrition and behavioural education.