The school environment has a significant impact on the development of eating habits. Everyone can remember purchasing an ice-cream, meat pie or sausage roll back in their day as a special occasion. But these days that rare occasion has grown into multiple times a week, or for some children even daily.
School canteens are a unique food business. Under ownership of the school, the ultimate responsibility for what is sold and how it is run lies with the Principal. Depending on the level of school community engagement, the canteen could be operated under the direct management of :
1. The Principal
2. The P&C
3. The School Council
4. Leasee (private operator)
It is the role of the chosen management body to then ensure the policies and procedures relevant to running the canteen are developed, implemented and reviewed. The canteen manager acts as an employee (paid or unpaid) who is managed by the management body.
Since 2010, all canteens in NSW are recognised as food businesses and must be registered with the NSW Food Authority.
Food sold from public school canteens in NSW must meet the Fresh Tastes @ School Policy and school communities must follow the Nutrition in Schools Policy which supports Fresh Tastes.