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University of Edinburgh joins Peas Please pledge

20th Jan 2021 - 07:00
The University of Edinburgh is increasing the amount of vegetables it serves to encourage staff and students to eat an extra portion a day.

Peas Please aims to unite farmers, caterers and government departments with a common goal of encouraging people to eat more vegetables.

Simon Kenton-Lake, policy & project officer at Nourish Scotland, said: "Government dietary guidance suggests we should be eating seven portions of fruit and veg a day, yet a recent report by the Food Foundation revealed that 80% of adults and 95.5% of children 11-16 years are not eating enough.

“To decrease the risk of diet related diseases, we need to be eating, on average, one more portion of veg per day. It’s not just our health that will benefit but the environment and farmers can potentially benefit from more veg too.

“Research by the London School of Health and Tropical Medicine showed that if we all eat an extra portion of veg and a little less meat we would reduce the UK’s diet-related greenhouse gas emissions by 17%.”

The University of Edinburgh has made three commitments: 

  • Increase the amount of veg served per recipe from 90 grams to 150 grams.
  • Maintain current practices (ensuring half of the meal options in outlets are vegetarian of plant-based).
  • Highlight and promote vegetables in cook-along videos.

Ian Macaulay, director of catering at The University of Edinburgh, added: "Our pledge to Pease Please shows our ongoing commitment to the stretching but achievable targets we set within an implementation plan underpinning the University's Good Food Policy.

“Whilst a number of different initiatives exist to increase the consumption of fruit and vegetables, Peas Please seemed an ideal fit: over 50% of items served throughout all catering areas are already vegetarian or vegan, so we're well-equipped to encourage our students and staff to choose more veg.”

Written by
Edward Waddell