Change the perception of vegetables among pupils


256 pupils from intermediate and senior secondary schools aged from 8 to 18 years old, have discovered what sustainable consumption meant via a project called “The reconquest of vegetables: for our health and our planet” launched by the Éco-Citoyennetés departmental association located in the Aude (France).

The objective of the project is about changing the perception of vegetables among children and adolescents aged from 8-18 years old with the aim of increasing their consumption via promoting education for taste, nutrition and environment, farm visits, encounters with local producers and also through “DIY” cooking workshops.

During the 2015-2016 school year, the children and teenagers were encouraged to eat local and seasonal products. They ate a wide variety of vegetables to better balance their diets and become responsible and respectful citizens, through eco agricultural practices and by giving greater importance to vegetable proteins and less to animal ones.

This project also enabled to bring to life the topics covered in class. Indeed, the students enjoyed investigating, asking questions to the local greengrocer about where foods come from, enjoyed going to a market gardener and observing how vegetables are grown via soil workshops, seasonality and biodiversity. They are starting to gain some grasp of the sustainability issues related to food and become increasingly aware of the importance of their health and the environment.

All the students ate the dishes they had prepared during the cooking workshops; they talked to their parents about it and even suggested to reproduce the recipes at home!

For 2016-2017, the Eco-Citoyennetés association is planning to extend its actions to other schools located in the Aude department (11), for instance, by organising some soup workshops, with the aim of promoting the consumption of local foods, respecting the environment and avoiding food waste.

This project was supported by the Louis Bonduelle Foundation as part of its 2015 call for proposals.