Posted on: Wednesday 3 May 2023
Pupils at Ysgol Gymraeg Gwynllyw have put their tastebuds to the test by trying out a variety of new plant-based meals.
The new menus are part of a plan by Torfaen Council’s School Catering Service to launch a new Sustainable School Meals Roadmap, which will increase the range of healthy meals that have a lower carbon footprint.
The school’s sixth form students recently arranged three tasting days for pupils.
The options included a cottage pie made with 100% pea flour mince and a pasta bake made with 50/50 pea flour mince and beef mince.
Year 7 pupils Mali Cameron and Gryffudd Pook both tried the meals. Mali said: “The cottage pie was wholesome and delicious, offering a combination of rich flavours.“
Gryffudd added: “The pasta bake was a combination of great textures. It did not taste any different; I did not even realise that it was a plant-based meal.”
Replacing beef mince with a plant-based alternative is known to reduce carbon emissions in the dish by up to seven times.
Each plant-based meal is gluten free, vegan friendly and made with British grown ingredients.
Reducing the carbon footprint of school meals will contribute towards Torfaen Council’s plan to be net carbon zero by 2030.
Head teacher at Ysgol Gymraeg Gwynllyw, Mark Jones, said: “Feedback from the pupils was mainly positive, with the majority preferring the 50/50 option and most saying they would eat it again.
“We have two more plant-based meals to trial which includes Quorn products and dishes from Devil’s Kitchen in Swansea.”
Feedback from the pupils will be sent to the catering team and be used as part of the review of sustainable menu options.