Tesco stores have now given out more than 100 million pieces of fruit as part of the retailer’s pioneering Free Fruit for Kids scheme.
The initiative allows parents to grab fresh apples and pears from stands in the fruit and veg aisle for their children to snack on while they do their shopping.
Free Fruit for Kids is aimed at helping children get one of their five a day, as well as helping to make the shopping journey a little easier for parents. Research by Health Survey for England in 2017 showed that less than one in five children aged 5-15 (18 percent) managed five portions of fruit and vegetables.
The scheme, which was the first of its kind in the UK, launched in 800 stores in summer 2016. It was the brainchild of Maria Simpson, a Tesco checkout colleague from the Brigg superstore in Lincolnshire who suggested giving free fruit to parents for their children to eat during shopping trips as an alternative to sweets.
Alessandra Bellini, Tesco’s chief customer officer, said: “We’re incredibly proud that kids across the UK have been able to enjoy 100 million pieces of fruit. We know that encouraging children to eat more fruit can sometimes be tricky and we hope that this helps children pick up healthy eating habits early.”
Tesco’s charity partners in its Little Helps for healthier living initiative, the British Heart Foundation, Cancer Research UK and Diabetes UK, commented: “Fruit and veg are a key part of a healthy balanced diet, but we know many of us are not eating enough. Simple ideas like Tesco’s Free Fruit for Kids is one way that could help parents encourage their children to eat more of their five a day.
“That’s why we’re delighted to help Tesco celebrate giving away 100 million pieces of fruit; they should be rightly proud of this effort to help children across the UK eat more healthily.”