Catering

Early Learning Centres and Catering

13 April 2024
Posted by: Chelsea

Early Learning Centres and Catering: As a parent, a primary concern will be to ensure that your child is appropriately and safely nourished through the day when they’re in a daycare centre of one sort or another.

When searching for “day care near me”, it’ll be important to look closely at what the responses indicate by way of their policies towards feeding children in their care.

Day care near me and catering

Everyone loves watching younger children eat.

True, food being thrown about or just dropped, isn’t always hilariously funny, particularly for those who need to clean up afterwards! Even so, watching children’s reactions to food, their development of eating practices and their expressions of delight (or less so!) with new tastes, is a wonder to behold.

However, today most of us regard eating as being something more than just an essential for survival and incorporate it into our views about lifestyle and health. That can be particularly true when it is our children’s food under discussion.

Healthy choices

In childcare centres today, there is a huge emphasis on healthy eating as well as catering.

Much of this is now taken for granted by most of us but ideas and practices here may differ from one early learning centre to another. Things such as the need to help children eat more fruit and vegetables are not seriously disputed but there can be differences of opinion and expert advice in terms of balances and frequencies etc.

The issues surrounding meat, fish, dairy and fats, can also be open to interpretation in terms of what is optimal. This leads in turn to questions relating to vegetarianism, veganism and variations thereof. Desserts can be equally divisive, involving positions on chocolate, nuts, flour types and so on.

There is no intention here of describing any views as ‘right’ or ‘wrong’ but simply to recognise that this is a very complex and opinion-dominated field.

Special needs

The subject of food and drink also raises questions of allergies and special needs arising from such.

For reasons that are not clear, allergies to food and drink products seem to be increasing across the industrialised world. Although some suggest this is attributable exclusively to greater awareness and parental sensitivities rather than medical facts, from a catering viewpoint, this can regularly add complexity to the equation.

The effects on day care centre catering

It’s impossible to predict how this rapidly changing scene will affect the propositions of an individual early learning centre. When searching for “day care near me”, you may find those that:

  • offer no in-house food, snacks, drinks or treats but instead will require parents to provide everything that’s required. This places the responsibility for ensuring compliance with parental requirements for their child’s food, back with the parents concerned;
  • will provide snacks, drinks and lunches but with a set menu that is effectively largely invariable:
  • do try to offer a degree of selection in their food and drink. They may allow parents to be more specific about what their child should and should not eat/drink but inevitably, this may need to stop short of offering an effective ‘à la carte’ service with a multiplicity of variations and offerings.

Some centres may be clear on their websites as to what they can offer and how flexible it will be possible for them to be. In other cases, it will be necessary to phone or email for details.

All will welcome further enquiries on this important subject.

If you’d like to know more about our policies and capabilities in this area, why not call us and arrange a time for a visit?

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