The Yellow Book of FSSAI

The Yellow Book of FSSAI

Have you heard about FSSAI’s The Yellow Book?  It is a guide to safe and nutritious Food at Indian Schools. It provides age appropriate contents which can be adopted by schools through state education machinery as part of curricular and co-curricular activities.

Health is responsibility of both individuals and society. One place where we all must promote health and safe food practice is at schools. Children will learn and take the information to home and to society.  Including good nutrition learning as part of syllabus helps in focusing healthy eating.

The Yellow Book was launched by Dr Vinod K Paul of NITI Ayog along with FSSAI Chairperson Mr. Ashish Bahuguna end of 2017. According to Mr. Bahuguna, “This holistic effort towards co-creating the culture of safe and wholesome food amongst schools with support of education machinery would go a long way in preparing our children as real change agents. The efforts are centered around building a robust curriculum, framework for easy adoption using digital solutions, enhancing capabilities of teachers through training mechanism and connecting like-minded stakeholders through a common platform. This would ensure that the vital knowledge reaches to the entire target population so that we can together achieve the vision of safe and healthy schools in our country”.

The Yellow Book covers topic including good safety practices, personal hygiene, clean habits, eating a balanced diet, packing wholesome lunchbox, how to prevent nutritional deficiencies and making healthy choices for school children. With these topics it also gives useful tips and activities for school children. The book is formulated after consultation, discussion and engagement with various education boards of India including CBSE, NCERT, State Boards and, with nutrition and education experts.

The philosophy here is ‘habits inculcated during childhood helps to create sustainable patterns of behavior and helps to ensure lifetime of safe and healthy food choices’.  To adopt this safe food and nutrition habits over 100 representatives from central and state Govt, school boards, voluntary organization and corporates have joined hands. They will help in building this effort.

FSSAI launched “School Engagement Platform” a portal that works online for schools to register and utilize resource materials.  FSSAI also working on providing an assessment framework to highlight model schools that are going to be pioneers in adopting safe and nutritious school framework.

Many companies including Kellogg, ITC, GSK offered to help FSSAI by either promoting the Book or by adopting schools for promoting safe and nutrition food. Emami, TetraPak, Marico have taken up activation programs across 1000 schools in India. PepsiCo reached out to colleges to support SNF Fellows. Rotary Club of India is working with over 75,000 schools across India to incorporate the Yellow Book into school curricula.

Reason to teach children about healthy eating at young age is to make them adopt Healthy Life habits  throughout their life. The interactive yellow book appears in three parts for different age groups -between age 4 to 17. The aim is inculcating wholesome food habits, safe food choice and personal hygiene. As a part of the suggested roll-out plan, appointment of school health and wellness coordinators are also suggested by experts.

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Author: Sumana Rao | Posted on: January 24, 2018

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