School caterer calls for more 'Martha's blogs'
Cucina boss says 'School Foodies' can help drive higher food standards
We must give young people the means to be powerful agents for change
Commenting on the recent 'Martha's Blog' media story, Cucina Restaurants MD Steve Quinn has called on school and academies to encourage students to share their opinions on the food they eat in school.
Quinn, whose company runs restaurants in 37 UK schools and academies, said:
"Nowadays kids have opportunities to participate in the curriculum and help shape it. Which is why I say let's have more blogs like Martha Payne's. None of us should be afraid of feedback. We should welcome it with open arms, which is why we are rolling out a 'school foodie' programme across all of our sites."
Making reference to the specific content of Martha Payne's 'NeverSeconds' blog, Quinn also said:
"It's been incorrectly implied by some that the purpose of Martha's blog is to tell the world about her 'terrible' school dinners. This suggests an agenda which doesn't exist. Go to the blog and you'll see that this nine year-old actually enjoys quite a few of her school meals and is happy to rate them as such."
As well as involving students in online surveys about its food, Cucina is rolling out a system whereby 2 'School Foodies' from each year (wearing specially created metal badges) attend School Food Council meetings every term to share information and feedback with the school chef team. School Foodies receive regular rewards for their efforts, including being allowed to go to the front of the dinner queue.