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Serving Better: Every meal counts in a climate emergency

Case Studies | Published  31 March 2021

Leeds City Council is normalising sustainable diets through public procurement and helping schools lower the carbon footprint of the meals they serve through a range of measures.

Government

Leeds City Council is normalising sustainable diets through public procurement and helping schools lower the carbon footprint of the meals they serve through a range of measures:

  • The Council has committed to sourcing food from local producers and suppliers in Yorkshire and surrounding counties to cut food miles.
  • Two meat-free days a week are now being served in 182 primary schools.
  • Planet Friendly Menus feature more plant protein, seasonal fruit and ‘less and better’ meat and dairy.
  • Leeds co-designed the new menus following feedback from pupils. 95% of those surveyed said they wouldn’t mind meat-free days to reduce carbon footprints. 

Serving plant-based school meals creates, on average, 75% less emissions than a meat-based meal. 

Councillor Helen Hayden, Executive member for infrastructure and climate at Leeds City Council:

“Sustainability is really important for so many reasons and it’s something we take seriously. These commitments will contribute to the council’s three strategic priorities for Leeds: facilitating inclusive growth by supporting local farmers and food producers; helping to improve the health and wellbeing of our food customers by improving the nutrition and quality of food served; and reducing our environmental impact in support of our ambition to become the first carbon-neutral major city in the UK."

To learn more about how local authorities can shift to  sustainable school meals, download the Serving Better guide and watch our Serving Better film.