Creating a policy helps to formalize your healthy choices goals.
Whether you are developing a new policy or reassessing and updating an existing nutrition policy there are a number of key areas you should consider. The following includes ideas for what to include in your policy.
- Request for Proposals for food-related services should require bidders to agree to meet any healthy eating guidelines adopted by the facilty.
- Food and beverage options that support healthy eating should be subsidized.
- Food and beverage options that support healthy eating should be provided at an equal or lower price in vending machines.
- Healthy eating options sold in facilities or communities should be labelled to help identify them as the healthy option (e.g. indicate with a checkmark).
- Healthy eating options should be positioned to promote visibility.
- The marketing of unhealthy eating options through company sponsorship should not be allowed within the facility or community.
Program and Events
- Foods and beverages are discouraged as a reward in programs provided by the recreation centre and staff.
- Foods and beverages provided for programs on site should meet any healthy eating guidelines adopted or established by the facility or community.
- Foods served at special events hosted in the facility should meet the healthy eating guidelines.
- Children should be provided a comfortable, calm environment in which to eat meals while participating in programs.
- Food at internal staff meetings must meet the facility or community healthy guidelines.
- Food at official staff social gatherings and training events must meet the healthy guidelines.
- Staff must be provided with a place to refrigerate and heat food brought from home.
- Staff must be given training on how to appropriately encourage healthy snacks to be brought from home.
Other areas for consideration
- Percentage of foods available from each category of the Nutrient Criteria;
- Eating environment (e.g. seating, fresh water fountains);
- Food access (e.g. community gardens, pocket markets, snack programs);
- Contract criteria for vendors;
- Sponsorship and advertising;
- Timelines for compliance; and
- Monitoring (e.g. spot checks).
Here is a list of question to help guide the development of your healthy choices policy:
You can also view sample policies from other communities to help you with this process.
- Sample Policy Template – Yukon Territory (suitable for small rural communties)
- Sample Policy Template – Healthy Choices Policy and Guiding Principles
- Sample Policy – Kamloops
- Sample Policy – Regional District of Nanaimo
- Sample Policy – Prince George
- Sample Policy – Regional District of North Okanagan
- Sample Policy – Fort St. John
- Suggestions for Sponsorhip and Corporate Advertizing