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Education ministry partners with Nestlé on healthy eating programme

Thursday, October 05, 2017

KINGSTON, Jamaica (JIS) — The Ministry of Education, Youth and Information is partnering with Nestlé Jamaica Limited to foster healthy eating habits among children.

Portfolio Minister Ruel Reid; and Country Manager, Nestlé Jamaica Limited, Daniel Caron, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) during a ceremony held at the company's head office in Ferry Pen, St Andrew yesterday.

The agreement will set the stage for better alignment, compliance, sharing of best practices and efficiency in resources, in order to help children develop healthy diets.

Reid said the partnership is timely, as the ministry is working on developing a comprehensive nutrition policy for the education sector.

“This is against the background of us trying to ensure that we instil a culture of wellness, which is embedded in the foundation of good nutritional habits and practices … as well as empower young people to have that lifestyle at home,” he pointed out.

Reid said the partnership will facilitate stress management sessions, portion control training for school canteen staff, and targeted healthy kids' signage to be installed in schools.

“This is tremendous in terms of the support that we will be getting from Nestlé … to promote healthy lifestyle,” he pointed out.,p> For his part, Caron said his company is pleased to reaffirm its commitment to health and wellness in Jamaica through the partnership with the education ministry.

“These commitments are linked to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (of) empowering parents, caregivers and teachers to foster healthy behaviours in children. We really look forward to this continuing journey and giving back to the community through education at an early age, and that is how we change behaviours,” he noted.

Nestlé aims to help 50 million children globally to lead healthier lives. Some of the company's school-based initiatives locally include the Nestlé Healthy Kids Programme and MILO Nutrition and Physical Activity Programmes.