Food Waste

Bishopston school takes action on Food Waste

By Daisy Nichols

Brunel Field Primary School in Bishopston opened in January 2011, admitting a total of 60 children into two Reception classes every year. Brunel Field is part of the Ashley Down Schools Federation and upholds their tradition of providing highly successful and nurturing education; promoting the Core Values of respect, commitment, compassion and joy. Inspired by the Bristol Going for Gold campaign, staff, pupils and caterers have united to take action on food waste in the school. Daisy Nichols, a volunteer with Resource Futures, has written about their efforts in the blog post below.

Bristol’s ambition to become a Gold Sustainable Food City can only be realised by mobilising the whole city. We were therefore thrilled to hear the campaign has inspired a school in Bishopston to take action on food waste.

Ms Day, teacher of a Year 2 class at Brunel Field Primary School, organised a whole school assembly focussed on food waste. The assembly presented how much food waste Bristol is producing, how little is being recycled, and efforts to improve this – including Bristol Waste Company’s Slim my Waste campaign. Focussing on the school, the assembly showed how much food waste the school had been sending to landfill from the lunchtime rubbish bin.

The children were told about the negative impact this can have on the environment, including releasing greenhouse gases. The pupils were encouraged to think about how wasting food also wastes everything which has gone into producing and transporting that food. The children were then given examples of things they could do to reduce food waste, including only asking for food that they intend to eat, and eating everything on their plate. The assembly finished with explaining why preventing food waste is important, including information on climate change and our very own Going for Gold campaign.

Inspired by this assembly, a number of children volunteered to be Food Waste monitors. They ran a meeting in their classes about the issue and reminded other children every lunchtime not to throw food away.

A teacher also spoke with kitchen staff who agreed to replace the existing bin with a smaller food waste caddy. This was weighed each lunchtime, and a display was created to show the reduction in food waste each day. The graph below shows that by taking these actions Brunel Field Primary School is close to reducing its average daily food waste by half in just one term!

We hope that the children are going home and talking to their grown-ups about their incredible achievements – parents and carers, if they have, please register to take action on the website and let us know where you heard about us!

Schools, if you have been inspired by Brunel Field and Bristol’s Going for Gold campaign, please pledge your actions on the website, or email us if you have any questions about what you could be doing. We are currently in the process of developing a toolkit to enable schools to take action on food waste as part of the campaign, so watch this space or get in touch if you would like us to send this to you!

And finally, congratulations to the pupils, staff and caterers at Brunel Field Primary School – you are setting a great example for how everyone else in Bristol can work together to help Bristol become a Gold Sustainable Food City! Keep up the great work!

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