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Reducing sugar at school

By the time children enter Reception, many are already consuming 3 times the recommended amount of sugar, putting them at risk of tooth decay and becoming overweight.

1 in 7 children in Hackney are already obese by the time they start primary school, almost doubling to 1 in 4 when they leave in Year 6.

Most of the sugar in children’s diets come from soft drinks (30%). Drinking large amounts of sugary drinks is also linked with a higher risk of developing Type II diabetes.

See more information on how much sugar children should be eating.

How to become Sugar Smart in Hackney

Sugar Smart Hackney aims to reduce excessive sugar consumption in the borough.

To help us achieve this, we are asking schools to take action to:

  1. Improve understanding of sugar and its risks: Hold a Sugar Smart assembly, run a Sugar Smart quiz, teach children how to read the label, guess how much sugar is in food and drinks, promote tap water, investigate why we eat so much sugar, investigate advertising and promotion of sugary foods and drinks, do a supermarket survey, make videos and posters on sugar, hold a sugar debate, give cooking classes.
  2. Improve food provision in schools: Provide sugar free / low sugar breakfasts, healthy lunch box guidance, work with caterers to provide low / no sugar menus, provide low / no sugar options at school events, promote low / no sugar after school snacks, only offer water or milk at and between meals.
  3. Get children, staff and parents to make individual pledges to reduce sugar: Make a Sugar Smart pledge

We have developed Sugar Smart fact and activity sheets (see below) to support the above activities, which can be shared if your school wants to join the campaign.

If you are interested in joining Sugar Smart Hackney, please contact

Resources to help you

For more information on Sugar Smart Hackney, contact

Follow us on Twitter: #SugarSmartHackney and @HackneyFood.

Page updated on: 16 July 2019