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Pentrebane Primary School help launch new and inspiring food initiative

Pentrebane Primary School has been taking part in an international pilot project which looksto engage children with local produce and help them to explore their unique food culture and heritage.

Co-produced by Food Sense Wales andtheInstituto Maniva inBrazil, Leekit has been inspired by the Tapiokit, an education workshop developed by the Maniva Institute focusing on the food culture of cassava.

With a focus on leeks, the children have learnt to cook with the vegetable, learnt more about its nutritional value and health benefits and explored its rich history and deep Welsh connections.

The Leekit offers an opportunity to learn from some of the pioneering work being implemented in Brazil and explore whether Wales could look at food in a similar way, specifically through harnessing the Well-Being of Future Generations Act.

Chef, food activist and academic Teresa Corção from the institute has worked with Food Sense Wales to help deliver workshops to teachers and pupilsfrom Pentrebane Primary School witha distinctive Welsh flavour, including input from food historian Carwyn Graves, the Dietetic Team at the Cardiff and Vale University Health Board and support from Education Catering at Cardiff Council with the provision of ingredients to make Leek and Potato Soup.

Mrs Prescott, Headteacher at the school said: “Leekit offers the chance for children to better understand Wales’ food culture and start to think about the food their eating, how it’s been grown and how it’s nourishing them. We have been pleased to become part of the pilot providing workshops to introduce children to their food culture, immersing them in their very own food stories and connecting them with where their food comes from.”

Katie Palmer, Programme Manager at Food Sense Wales said: “Wales can learn so much from Brazil and the work being done with schools across the country.  The Leekit offers the chance for children to better understand Wales’ food culture and start to think about the food their eating, how it’s been grown and how it’s nourishing them.”

Emma Holmes,Strategic Lead for Community Dietetics atCardiff and Vale University Health Board said: “Cardiff and Vale Dietetics are pleased to have the opportunity to work with our new partners from the Instituto Maniva in Brazil as well as ongoing partnership with the local education system and Food Sense Wales. It has enabled us to build on our existing good work in schools across Cardiff and the Vale, and has improved focus on food culture, local produce and sustainability, which supports the new elements of the Curriculum for Wales, while encouraging a healthy balanced diet for children and their families.”

In Brazil, the National School Feeding Programme (Programa Nacional de Alimentação Escolar or PNAE) provides nutritious, healthy and locally sourced food to millions of students across the country accompanied by nutrition education.  The programme’s operated by the National Fund for Education Development, an independent body within Brazil’s Ministry of Education.

TeresaCorção from the Mainva Institute adds:”For us, Brazilians, it’s an honour to create this partnership with Food Sense Wales and all the Wales team. We have learnt so much already, exchanging knowledge from our indigenous food culture, cassava, to theirs, leeks.  I am sure many good things will come from this in the future.”