Thank you for the FOI enquiry requesting information on:
- the Governments school fruit and vegetable scheme, including:
- the results of the risk assessment covering the microbiological safety of giving children aged 3 to 6 years (i.e. a vulnerable group) soiled root vegetables (carrots) to be eaten raw, unpeeled, nor topped or tailed?
- how the amount of information provided to schools relating to the safe consumption of the fruit and vegetables was determined? For instance the guidance leaflet discuss allergies but there is no mention on the importance of washing root vegetables thoroughly particularly because of the E. coli 0157 risk (or providing FSA guidance on washing soiled vegetables), the avoidance of cross contamination from soil on carrots etc, and potential risk of choking on the top or tail of carrots in particular for the under fives?
- information on why it was decided that there would not be an ‘opt in’ or ‘opt out’ consent for parents of children participating in the scheme? This is particularly important because parents are not aware of what their children are been given to eat and and the fact that for example carrots are not peeled, or topped or tailed. Also that there are pesticide residues present. Why are parents not given all of the information so that they can make an informed decision?
The request was handled as a request for information under the Freedom of Information Act 2000. SCCL have provided the following response to the above request, see attached response.