National School Meals Week – What’s on the Menu?

LACA’s annual celebration of school food reaches a milestone this year, with National School Meals Week (NSMW) 2018 marking the 25th anniversary of the event.

Running from November 12-16, organisers are promising ‘there will be plenty to celebrate during this Silver Jubilee year’.

New this year will be some special features, including an online poll to find out the public’s favourite school meal over the past 25 years.

From the emails, tweets and messages received, NSMW will create a shortlist of 10 and put the list to the vote. The top dish will be announced in September, with school caterers encouraged to put it on their menus during NSMW.

There are also plans for ‘one-off’ event this year when LACA will bring together the 10 finalists in this year’s School Chef of the Year competition and get them to collaborate on baking a celebratory cake to mark Prince Charles’s 70th birthday, which falls during NSMW.

And another new idea will be NSMWeekly – a weekly fact posted on Twitter and the NSMW Homepage that aims to be ‘interesting, inspiring and motivational’.

Returning features include #cookeditmyselfie, in which all cooks are encouraged to post photos of the meals they have cooked using the hashtag #cookeditmyselfie.

This year suppliers are being encouraged to get involved too, with recipes and inspiration for school caterers using their ingredients. The best photo entry will earn the winner £500 of equipment or marketing support.

National Roast Dinner Day, supported by the Soil Association’s Food For Life, will feature during NSMW again, while Host a School Chef will encourage leading hotels, restaurants and kitchens to host a school caterer.

And following NSMW 2017’s ‘5 marathons in 5 Days’, NSMW will be back on

the road taking important messages out to each region about how school meals contribute towards health, creativity, academic attainment, concentration and behaviour.

LACA members can get information about NSMW and free marketing resources to download from


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