Give school meals the 14-taste test

2nd November 2007 at 00:00
It should come as no surprise that pupils are rejecting new "healthy" school meals.

Research shows that it takes 14 tastes for a child to accept a new food. If you think about it, this is sensible in evolutionary terms - back in our hunter-gatherer past, eating strange foods could have led to an early demise.

Schools would have done better if they had introduced "taster" days first, or "new" foods one day a week, or free samples or half-price new dishes - there are lots of options.

The important thing is to get the kids tasting the new foods before these are the only alternative.

Sadie Williams, department of educational research, Lancaster University.

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