Office of Preventive Health

Healthy School Canteen


NSW Healthy School Canteen Strategy

The NSW Healthy School Canteen Strategy (the Strategy) aims to increase student access to healthy and affordable foods and drinks. There is strong and consistent evidence that a healthy canteen, supported by education, can make a positive impact on the health and wellbeing of children and young people now and into the future.

The NSW Office of Preventive Health works closely with their Education partners to manage and support the implementation of the Strategy in NSW schools. All public schools with a canteen are required to comply with the Food and Drink Criteria that underpin the Strategy by 31 December 2019. Independent and Catholic schools are also encouraged and supported to participate.

The Local Health District health promotion officers support their local primary schools to understand and implement the Strategy as part of the Live Life Well @ School program. The Office of Preventive Health also funds the NSW Secondary School Support Service to provide assistance to secondary schools.

Food and Drink Criteria that underpin the Strategy

• At least 75% (3/4) of the menu is comprised of ‘Everyday’ food and drink choices
• No sugar-sweetened drinks are for sale in the canteen or vending machines
• ‘Occasional’ food and drinks have a Health Star Rating of at least 3.5 stars
• All Occasional menu items and Everyday hot meals, 99% juices and flavoured milks meet portion size limits
• Canteens only include Everyday foods and drinks in promotion and marketing activities.

Key achievements

As at 20 August 2019, a total of 800 NSW schools have passed a canteen menu check verifying that they are meeting the requirements of the NSW Healthy School Canteen Strategy. Eighty percent of these are primary schools, 15.5% are secondary and 4.5% are combined schools.
For more information and case examples of schools that are implementing the Strategy visit

© 2016 South Western Sydney Local Health District
Last Updated: 08 November, 2019
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