School tuckshops criticised for selling unhealthy snacks

By Siyabonga Kalipa Time of article published Feb 27, 2021

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Cape Town - Some pupils have bought into the idea of getting pocket money for school to buy from the tuckshop. Children do not get much of a choice on what to buy, but settle for sweets, cheap crisps, doughnuts, hot dogs and fizzy drinks.

This offering has led some parents to stop giving their children money to take to school.

Lwethu Ndengezi, 9, a Grade 4 pupil at Rocklands Primary School, said she only got pocket money for school on Fridays.

“I usually buy a hot dog and a doughnut because they are not sold in shops where I stay. During the week, I carry a lunchbox prepared from home.”

She said even though it was fun to have money, she preferred bringing food from home.

Her brother Lunikho Ndengezi, 11, a Grade 6 pupil, said he enjoyed what he bought from the tuckshop, but sometimes it made him sick. “I got a stomach ache one time from stuff I bought from the tuckshop. Now my mom doesn’t want us to buy again.”

Mate’ Nelson, 10, a Grade 5 pupil from Imperial Primary School, said she could only buy sweets.

“My mom and dad don’t give me money to take to school because we buy sweets.” She said unhealthy food was sold in their school’s tuckshop.

A parent, Marshall Nelson, said he was not happy with what was sold to their children.

“Our children buy a lot of no-name brands and brands we have never heard of, with no expiry dates.”

He said they gave children money in good faith, hoping they would use it wisely.

“We must pack healthy foods for them. That way, we teach them to get used to eating healthy.”

Weekend Argus

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