ACT Nutrition Support Service » Services » Schools » ACT Public School Food and Drink Policy

ACT Public School Food and Drink Policy

ACT Nutrition Support Service » Services » Schools » ACT Public School Food and Drink Policy

ACT Public School Food and Drink Policy

The ACT Government has developed a school food and drink policy with supporting guidelines to support public schools to implement the National Healthy School Canteen Guidelines.


The ACT Public School Food and Drink Policy was released in February 2015 and encourages a whole school approach to the provision and sale of healthy food and drinks.

The Policy requires schools to apply the National Healthy School Canteen Guidelines to canteens in all public schools and all ACT public school activities and events. This means that RED category foods and drinks are not permitted to be sold or provided in the canteen or at school events, or used for fundraisers or classroom rewards.

 Specifically, the Policy states:

  • The majority of items on the canteen menu should be GREEN (i.e. over 50%) and these should be promoted.
  • AMBER items should form a smaller proportion of the menu items and these should not be actively promoted
  • No RED items should be available for sale in the canteen.
  • Menus should demonstrate a shift towards the GREEN end of the traffic light spectrum over time. 

The Policy does not apply to food from home. For example, the food children bring to school in their lunchboxes is not required to comply with the Policy. Foods prepared for curriculum related education such as Food Technology or Hospitality units are also exempt from the Policy.

For more information about the ACT Public School Food and Drink Policy and to view FAQs, visit the Education Directorate website.