Foods sold and served at school

Many schools offer or sell meals and snacks to students throughout the day, which presents an opportunity to provide a variety of foods from Canada’s Food Guide. When offering or selling food at school, refer to the two documents below that apply to the school setting in Ontario:

School Food and Beverage Policy (PPM-150)

  • Applies to all food and beverages sold to students at school
  • Based on the previous version of Canada’s Food Guide (2007)
  • Last updated in 2011
  • Will be updated in the future – stay tuned!

Student Nutrition Program (SNP) Guidelines

  • Applies to all food and beverages offered to students at school, as part of a Student Nutrition Program (e.g., breakfast or snack program)
  • Based on the current Canada’s Food Guide (2019)
  • Last updated in 2020

It is suggested to use the SNP guidelines for all food and beverages sold and offered in schools, as they are current and more comprehensive from a nutritional standpoint. See pages 34-39 in the SNP Guidelines for meal and snack ideas. It should, however, be noted that school administrators must continue to follow, at a minimum, PPM-150 for items sold in schools.

The PPM 150 and SNP Guidelines are meant to be used for adults making decisions about food offered or sold to students in the school setting. They should not be used to support student food and nutrition education or to comment on food brought from home. Deciding what to pack in a lunch is the caregivers’/parents’ or student’s responsibility, depending on age and ability. For more information, see the resources Nurturing Healthy Eaters in Elementary Schools and Secondary Schools.