Scottish Parliament – Food for Thought

We were delighted to participate in the Business in the Community Scotland ‘Food for Thought’ showcase event at the Scottish Parliament, which brought MSPs, schools and a wide range of organisations involved in food and education together to hear from speakers including Shirley Spear about the programme, and talk to companies who have been working closely with schools. Hamlyns were the only food producer at the event, and we were in great company with other exhibitors including John Lewis, the Royal Horticultural Society, SLOW Food, Love Food Hate Waste and Jamie’s Italian. Jamie Oliver couldn’t be there in person, but had sent a great video message for the evening.

Food for Thought is an educational programme run in partnership by Education Scotland, the Scottish Government and Business in the Community in Scotland. The programme aims to involve pupils in nursery, primary and secondary schools in food-related projects, to encourage healthier eating habits, and provide a better understanding of the importance to the Scottish economy of jobs in the food and drink industry. Pupils learn about sustainable food production by growing their own produce, cooking and trying out new recipes and gaining an appreciation of the value of locally produce food and drink. In addition, the interdisciplinary projects develop their numeracy, presentation and communication skills and encourage them to learn more about Scottish heritage.
Hamlyns has been working with BITC for the past twelve months, visiting one primary school each month to talk about oat production. Most schools also do a hands-on activity which can be porridge tasting, or baking with oats. Many of them extend the project to other areas of the curriculum, particularly art and design, by designing packaging – we’ve seen many great ideas.
The stars of our stand were two P5 pupils from Braidbar primary school in Glasgow, who joined us on the stand and talked to visitors about our visit to their school and what they had learned, as well as giving out samples of two of the oat bars that their class had made for our visit.
We usually start each school talk by asking the children how many of them have tried porridge, how many like it, and how many had it for breakfast that morning, and it’s great to see that this most traditional of Scottish foods is widely enjoyed by primary school children.
Contact us if you would be interested in a visit to your school.
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