1. Implementing guidelines
Voluntary guidance and example menus exist for early years settings to support them in providing nutritious food for all the children in their care. An expert in nutrition will understand the evidence and rationale behind them, and be able to translate this into practice for the setting.
2. Ensuring variety
Variety is key to having a healthy and nutritious diet, and early years settings are in an important position of being able to offer children the opportunity to try a range of new foods. A nutrition expert can provide support in introducing new foods gradually to a menu, to minimise waste and costs.
3. Diverse needs
Menus must fit the demographics of the nursery as well as meeting all children’s dietary requirements, including catering for those with food allergies or intolerances.
An expert in nutrition will be able to advise settings on suitable food substitutions that are inclusive and meet requirements.
4. Reassuring parents
Bringing expert advice into a setting demonstrates to parents that the approach a setting is taking is based on the latest evidence and can be trusted.
This can have a positive impact on relationships with existing parents and, just as importantly, make the setting stand out to potential new customers.