A team led by the Institute of Food Research has completed a 2-year study of food choices made at a North London school, to be published on Thursday. Scientists tested the viability of using “smart card” technology to monitor pupils’ mealtime choices.
Project leader Dr Nigel Lambert said: “School dinners are currently a highly political and emotive social issue. The government has pledged to tackle menus, but measuring children’s eating habits at school is fraught with difficulties. Accurate information is necessary to support the government’s public health policies. Smart card technology could provide a practical and accurate solution.”
One in five English secondary schools makes use of basic smart card systems for meal payment. This takes cash out of schools and reduces queuing times. The cafeteria at Haberdashers’ Aske’s Boys’ School routinely serves around 1000 diners aged 7-16 and their system was upgraded for the study. For over a year, a full electronic audit was made of every transaction that took place and each food chosen was converted to its nutrient composition.
Zoe Dunford | alfa
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The Max Planck Institute for Physics (MPP) is opening up a new research field. A workshop from November 21 - 22, 2016 will mark the start of activities for an innovative axion experiment. Axions are still only purely hypothetical particles. Their detection could solve two fundamental problems in particle physics: What dark matter consists of and why it has not yet been possible to directly observe a CP violation for the strong interaction.
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