By Our Correspondent, Baglung, Mar. 25: With the aim of prohibiting junk food as a midday meal in schools and promote locally produced food across the public schools of the Tamankhola Rural Municipality, Baglung, the Municipality has ordered schools to strictly prohibit feeding junk food as lunch in the schools.
The rural municipality has ordered to use foods like maize, pumpkin, and potato in lunch for school children, said Purna Bahadur Gharti, Chief of Education Department of the municipality.
Considering children’s health and promoting local food production, the rural municipality has decided to ban junk food as a midday meal in public schools, said Joklal Budha Magar, Chief of the rural municipality.
He added that the municipality provides benefaction only to those schools that provide the locally produced food as lunch of school children. The 21 public schools across the municipality have been receiving Rs. 15 per day per student for the midday meal.
From the Nepali month of Mangsir, the rural municipality has been providing lunch grant to students up to Grade V. Under the Primary Children Development Centre, the government has decided to feed school children up to Grade V for 180 days.
If the schools avoid junk foods like noodles, chow Mein, biscuits and bitten rice as lunch in schools, it will also help promote marketing of local produce, said Magar. After monitoring the schools what types of food the schools are feeding their students, then only the rural municipality releases the grant.
The local government would provide the midday meal to the schools under the federal government. The World Health Organization (WHO) has also made the guidelines that the school children of the age between four to ten should be provided with the foods that include essential nutrients like protein, fat, iodine, iron, zinc, vitamin A and B.
Society Development Community under the municipality and rural municipality has been implementing the midday meal programme in the schools.