Packed Lunch Policy

We want to make sure that children who bring a lunch from home to eat in Nursery have food that is just as healthy and nutritious as food served at schools that is regulated by national standards. To give clear guidance to parents, carers, children and staff on providing a healthy packed lunch and snack. We believe that a healthy packed lunch can contribute to the health of children and needs to be consistent with the nutritional standards provided by Early Years Nutritional Guidelines. The policy applies to all packed lunches and snack consumed within Nursery.

Proposed content of Packed Lunches:

  • Fruit and vegetables; at least one portion of fruit, vegetables or salad a day. Ensure grapes and berries are cut in half (long ways).
  • Carbohydrates; starchy food such as bread, pasta, rice, couscous, noodles, potatoes (not fried)
  • Dairy; food such as milk, cheese, yoghurt, fromage frais, or soya products
  • Drinks; water, pure fruit juice (no added sugar), milk, yogurt drinks or smoothies
  • A cake bar or small packet of biscuits (not to contain chocolate)
  • Age appropriate crisps or snacks

The following must not be included in packed lunches or snack:

  • Fried food
  • Chocolate, unless part of a biscuit authorised by staff
  • Nuts or any nut containing products
  • Fizzy/sugary drinks in cartons, bottles or cans (including diet or energy drinks which contain high levels of caffeine and other additives which are not suitable for children)
  • Confectionary such as chocolate bars and sweets

All packed lunches should be age appropriate, so that the child can eat independently and should not need preparing by the teacher. Cooked food, such as pasta, rice, meat etc. cannot be reheated on the premises, so please ensure your child’s lunch can be consumed either at room temperature or from the fridge.

We ask parents/carers to be aware of nut and other allergies. For this reason pupils are not permitted to swap food items. As some children in Nursery may have nut allergies we ask parents to refrain from including nuts or peanut butter in their lunch boxes/bags.

Packed Lunch Containers

We ask that parents/carers provide a packed lunch container where food items can be stored securely and appropriately until the lunch time period. As fridge space is limited we advise the packed lunches are in insulated bags, preferably with freezer blocks to keep food cool especially in the summer months.

Facilities for Packed Lunches

We will:

Provide appropriate facilities to store packed lunches.

Make sure all Children have access to drinking water at all times

Children under the age of 12 months will be given breast or formula milk (provided by the parent/carer)

Children aged 1-2 years of age will be given whole cow’s milk (provided by the nursery)

Semi Skimmed cow’s milk is available at snack time for all 2-5year olds (provided by the nursery).


To promote healthy eating we will regularly monitor the content of packed lunches and snacks. We will talk to parents/carers where necessary and offer guidance on bringing healthy packed lunches and snack. If lunches are not deemed to meet nutritional standards parents will be advised on changes that need to be made. Any sweets or sugary drinks will be sent home at the end of the day. Water and milk will be provided as an alternative. If a child’s packed lunch continues not to follow the guidance then the parent/carer will be asked to come in for a consultation with the manager.