Will Meat and Dairy Be ‘Expelled’ From School Meals?  

For Immediate Release:
22 June 2020

Jennifer White +44 (0) 20 7837 6327, ext 222; [email protected]

Will Meat and Dairy Be ‘Expelled’ From School Meals?  

PETA, Sir Paul McCartney, and Environmental, Health, and Animal Groups Call For  Modernisation of School Meal Guidelines

London – As the School Food Standards, the guidelines for school meals in England, are under review, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA), Greenpeace UK, Meat Free Monday, and others have sent a letter urging the secretary of state for education to remove the mandatory servings of fish, meat, and dairy and replace them with more flexible nutritional guidelines.

In the letter, the group notes that the current animal-derived food mandates limit schools’ capacity to serve children climate-friendly vegan foods and are out of step with the government’s own nutritional advice to the public – the Eatwell Guide – which allows for nutritional needs to be met without meat and dairy.

Paul, Mary, and Stella McCartney, founders of Meat Free Monday, said in support of the campaign, “No one needs to eat meat, so it shouldn’t be mandatory to serve it in schools. It’s time to revise the School Food Standards to help the planet, spare animals, and promote healthy eating.”

PETA’s proposal is also supported by the Royal Society for Public Health, Greenpeace UK, Compassion in World Farming, Plant-Based Health Professionals UK, Humane Society International UK, Animal Aid, ProVeg UK, Veganuary, Viva!, Quorn Foods, Caroline Lucas MP, and Henry Smith MP.

PETA – whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat” – points to a poll by Linda McCartney Foods in 2019, which revealed that 70% of British children want more vegan meals on their school menus. As the world faces dual health and climate crises, going vegan is one of the best things young people can do for animals, the planet, and their own health.

PETA opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. The group’s letter to Secretary of State for Education Gavin Williamson is available here. For more information, please visit PETA.org.uk.