Aus vegetable kids initiative

Nutrition experts have created a new education resource aimed at boosting vegetable consumption among Australian kids, as part of the VegKit project funded by Hort Innovation.

The searchable website features projects, programmes and research that can be used by health professionals, organisations and agencies in their own settings to support children’s vegetable intake.

It is the first outcome of the five-year VegKit project, which is being led by the CSIRO in consortium with Flinders University and Nutrition Australia.

Nutrition Australia led the development of the online registry and its chief executive, Lucinda Hancock, said it was designed as an easy-to-use, approachable and credible source of inspiration and would supporting those who work with children to implement projects and initiatives or upload their own work for others to see.

“Working together with community and public health workers, educators, organisations and researchers means we can expand the impact of VegKit and improve the likelihood of addressing the issue,” Hancock said.

“The overall goal of the registry is to increase the reach of contributors’ work and motivate others in the child and public health settings to use the resources to put into place their own projects to improve vegetable consumption of children.

“It is only with the collaboration of a range of individuals that we can combat this growing issue.”

Rebecca Golley, researcher at Flinders UniversityCaring Futures Institute, said the Institute was working on a number of ways to increase the vegetable consumption of Australia’s children.

“Flinders is also working with international experts as well as health, child development and education professionals to look for opportunities to foster a liking and acceptance of vegetables right from when children start to eat,” Golley said.

“We are also working with industry partners to explore novel food service models to overcome common barriers to supporting kids to eat plenty of vegetables in childcare,” added Golley.

“Ultimately this trusted and reviewed wealth of knowledge provides a suite of practical tools, programs and initiatives for educators and health care professionals to promote vegetable consumption in key settings such as long daycare centres and schools.”