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A Healthy Future

AN Eden school is at the forefront of involving Cumbrian children in the Soil Association’s Food for Life programme.

As part of the launch week, 25 pupils from Crosby Ravensworth CE Primary School visited Beech Tree Farm, Reagill, and made their own apple juice with the help of proprietors Alister and Jane Woodstrover.

Food for Life is about making good food the easy choice for everyone and re-connecting with where it comes from, how it is grown and cooked and championing the importance of well-sourced ingredients.

Its aim is to engage children, parents, staff and the wider community to create a powerful voice for long-term change. Schools work to a bronze, silver or gold standard, evidencing their achievements against agreed criteria.

Pupils also visited local market-gardening cooperative, Vista Veg, where Lynne Barnes helped the children with a number of projects including taking graftings from blackcurrant bushes which it is hoped will reap a harvest for the school in years to come.

“There is an ever increasing interest and important focus on knowing exactly where the ingredients on our plates come from, and that they are quality products,” said headteacher Duncan Priestley. “Involving our children in this important initiative is key and it’s fantastic that they really enjoy it as well.”

The Westmorland Family, who run Tebay Services, Tebay Services Hotel and the Rheged Centre, near Penrith, have partnered with the Soil Association to fund four primary schools in the county to take part in the Food for Life School Award programme.

“This is a really exciting project for us to be involved, giving local primary school children the chance to immerse themselves in an exciting enterprise project in which they learn about food and farming, whilst encouraging a better understanding of food and its benefits to life and health and wellbeing,” said Claire Urquhart, community manager for the Westmorland Family. “As a food business we are also able to offer the schools ongoing support and knowledge from our teams plus links with some amazing local food producers.”