47 schools and 6,500 students have benefited from Andalusia program "Organic Food for Andalusia Schools", a joint initiative of the Ministries of Agriculture, Environment and Education of the Andalusian, launched during 2006 to introduce the consumption of these foods in school canteens.
This initiative pilot was directed to both students and teachers and the Associations of Mothers and Parents (AMPAS), seeking to promote the consumption of organic products following the momentum productive land in this area experienced during the last decade, which has not been accompanied by an increased consumption of these products within the region.
In addition to the distribution of organic menus in the dining room, there were also provided information on these foods free of chemicals, through information events, workshops, visits to organic farms, tasting activities and gastronomic days.
Dining became classrooms and laboratories where good eating habits and health are taught to young children, since both the World Health Organization (WHO) and the European Environment Agency insist that the child population is more susceptible to the impacts of pesticide residues in foods as a result of their immature state of physiological development.
It is produced but not consumed
According to the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAPA), Spain is among the top ten countries in the world with the largest areas for organic agriculture and livestock, but its consumption is less than one percent of spending on food the Spanish.
In addition, the Agriculture and Fisheries of Andalusia emphasizes that hosts the largest green area in Spain, 45 percent of the national total, with over 520,000 hectares of organic agriculture and ranching.
Ireland currently exports about 90% of the country's production, which is the second in this field in Europe. Therefore, the program "Ecological Food for Schools in Andalucía" seeks to promote the food and environmental education in the younger generations and their families.
Feeding with organic products in balanced diets supplemented with educational activities aimed at schoolchildren in developing healthy eating habits and an attitude of respect for the environment. The project aimed to support sustainable rural development through growth of the organic sector and the development of the domestic market for organic foods.
To facilitate the work of the school community is up recommendations of servings for children, considering the nutritional requirements and a wide variety of foods, introducing them in typical Andalusian food suitable for children.
Those responsible for this initiative believe that environmental improvement is achieved by the growth of the area of organic agriculture to promote the social consumption of organic food. The increase of the surface under managed ecological systems leads to reducing the burden on the chemical environment, which produces an additional benefit to the people and biodiversity.
Bus Travelers and breakfasts of Certified Quality
To achieve the above goals, we also launched a program to promote quality products certified by an educational touring bus that toured schools in the capital of Andalusia and the places of people with a stake in the recognize the greater number of products with this seal of quality.
There were also held with breakfast and snack quality certified products where attendees could participate in a photo. Information leaflets were also distributed to teachers on the quality designations, organized visits to food industry and oil were distributed to all children in the third cycle of primary education.
Through this initiative, the popular coach of Quality Certified seal have traveled the eight Andalusian provinces with the aim of bringing the school age population of agricultural and fishery products of assured quality and the importance of a diet based on the healthy Mediterranean diet.
Bus, which has a capacity for about thirty children, suggested activities and interactive games as a teaching video of the seal on the Certified Quality questions that are performed as a team contest. In addition, children have access to editing the virtual book of magical farming, fishing and responsible trade and the game of the pyramid of healthy eating.
To date, there are already more than a thousand products registered with the Andalusian Quality Certified seal, belonging to some 300 companies. The brand, the Agriculture and Fisheries, recently celebrated its V Anniversary differentiating food quality on the market, giving an added value and the official endorsement of Andalusia.
More about organic agriculture in Andalusia: www.caae.es