School Food Trust

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According to The School Food Trust's website:

The School Food Trust was established by the Department for Education and Skills in September 2005. Its remit is to transform school food and food skills, promote the education and health of children and young people and improve the quality of food in schools.[1]

The Trust has four key areas of work:

  • Ensure all schools meet the food based and nutrient based standards for lunch and non-lunch food
  • Increase the uptake of school meals
  • Reduce diet-related inequalities in childhood through food education and school based initiatives
  • Improve food skills through food education, and school and community initiatives.


Retains food industry front group Purely Nutrition for education advice.



  • Prue Leith is the Chair of the School Food Trust. She built her reputation after founding three renowned companies - catering firm Leith's Good Food, Michelin starred restaurant Leith's and Leith's School of Food and Wine - in the 1960s and 1970s, which eventually employed 500 people and turned over £15million a year when she sold them in 1995. She previously chaired The Focus on Food Campaign, and the British Food Trust. A food columnist for four national newspapers between 1969 and 1998, she has written 12 cookbooks, including the best selling Leith's Cookery Bible, and presented television shows and documentaries. She believes: "This is the most important job I have ever had."
  • Baroness Maggie Jones has recently been appointed to the House of Lords and has been Director of Policy and Public Affairs at UNISON, representing people who work in public services, the voluntary and private sectors. Maggie has also spearheaded campaigns on food quality and nutritional standards and has practical experience of school meal issues.
  • Beverley Baker is Head of Commercial Services for Surrey County Council. She is responsible for the delivery of a variety of services to County sites, including the provision of 55,000 school meals everyday to 400 schools. She has a degree in catering management from the University of Surrey and is a past national Chair of The Local Authority Caterers Association (LACA). She was a member of the School Meals Review Panel, the expert group which recommended the new standards for school meals. She is currently working with the Government Office of the SE as a member of a steering group considering opportunities for the development of local procurement in the public sector and she is a Board member of Surrey Food Links, a newly established Council supported company aiming to help local producers bring quality local produce to market.
  • Frances Crook is the Director of the Howard League for Penal Reform. She has been involved in developing crime prevention aspects of the Citizenship Curriculum and has set up a business delivering organic packed lunches to schools.
  • John Dyson is adviser to the British Hospitality Association on all food and technical matters.
  • Andrew Gillard is Curriculum Director at Peterborough Regional College. He has worked as an external verifier, reporting on the quality of culinary provision in prisons, colleges and other workplaces. He also undertook a secondment with OFSTED and remains an additional for post 16 education and training.
  • Paul Kelly is Group Corporate Affairs Director for Compass Group plc. He chairs the Safety, Health and Environment Forum and leads for the Group on all nutrition issues. He is also Vice President of the European Federation of Contract Catering Organisations.
  • Carmel McConnell is founder of Magic Breakfast, a child nutrition charity that provides free breakfasts and nutrition education to primary schools. She is Managing Director of Magic Outcomes, which delivers training and development with all profits going to Magic Breakfast. In addition to this Carmel is also an author of five books about personal and social change.
  • Jeanette Orrey was catering manager of St Peter's School in Nottingham, and was one of the originators of the good school meals movement. She is School Meal Policy Adviser at the Soil Association and has launched a training school for school cooks in conjunction with an Essex farmer. She is also the author of 2 award winning books, The Dinner Lady and Second Helpings.
  • Sir John Oldham is the Head of the Improvement Foundation (Formerly National Primary Care Development Team) a team he established, at the request of the NHS Executive, He is a practicing physician who regularly conducts workshops and presentations internationally. He also created the concept of the award-winning Healthy Communities Collaborative with residents of deprived areas as the improvement team members. In 2003 he was awarded a knighthood for services to the NHS.
  • Rob Rees MBE is a former chef, restaurateur and former board member of the Food Standards Agency. He chairs Kraft's 'Health4Schools' project and is a trustee for the British Nutrition Foundation. He Chairs the SW Delivering Group for the Year of Food and Farming, the GOSW Transforming School Food Group and Stroud Educational Business Partnership. He is Director of 2 Companies Rob Rees Consulting Ltd, The Cotswold Chef Ltd and the Chief Executive of The Wiggly Worm Ltd Charity. Rob is also a Member of the Food Standards Agency Advisory Committee on Microbiological Safety of Food and the Ambassador for Gloucestershire Food Vision. He was awarded an MBE in 2005 for Services to the Food Industry and the Image of Britain Award in 2006.
  • Sir Tom Shebbeare is Director of Charities to HRH the Prince of Wales with responsibility for the development and good governance of sixteen operational charities. Tom is non-executive Director of In Kind Direct (UK), UK Skills, Queens College (London) and the Nations Trust (South Africa).
  • Christopher Tweedale is a senior education adviser at the DfES and an associate of the Prime Minister's Delivery Unit. Before joining the DfES he taught in five secondary schools including eight years as a headteacher. In this role he oversaw the improvement of the quality of food provided at his school including letting a new catering contract and the design and build of a new dining room and school kitchen.
  • Sheila Walker is Head of Catering Services at Birmingham City Council and is responsible for the delivery of around 75,000 school meals a day in 414 schools and 24 day nurseries , which have a very diverse pupil population. She has been employed in the school meal provision for over 36 years both at practical and managerial levels. She was also a member of the School Meals Review Panel.
  • Ian Wasson was until recently General Manager of Devon Direct Services (DDS) and was Chair of the Local Authority Caterer's Association from 1998 to 2000. As General Manager of DDS, Ian was responsible for catering services in over 350 primary schools and 20 senior schools with a turnover of £11m, and the role involved the negotiation of service level agreements with head teachers, parents and governors. The development of the ‘Fresh Start' primary meals service utilised fresh, local ingredients prepared from scratch so the LEA was able to meet the planned nutrient standards in advance of the 2008 target. Ian has been undertaking some consultancy work, with a major consultancy in the local authority sector regarding their catering services.


References, Resources and Contact


Address: N904 Moorfoot, Sheffield, S1 4PQ, UK
Tel: 0844 800 9048


  1. SFTWebsite, SFT (Accessed: 22 October 2007)
  2. Our Goals, SFT (22 October 2007)