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Tory councillors fear switch to vegetarian and vegan meals at Powys schools

05 Dec 2022 2 minute read
Students eating at school. Picture by Ben Birchall / PA Wire.

Elgan Hearn, local democracy reporter

Promises to serve meat and dairy products at Powys schools are being sought by councillors who fear that menus could become vegetarian and vegan cuisine only.

At a Powys County Council meeting on Thursday, December 8 a motion will be brought forward by Conservative councillors that seeks a commitment to serve meat and dairy for at least the next five years.

The concern is due to a move earlier this year by Liberal Democrat/Labour and Green Party run Oxfordshire County Council.

In Oxford, the administration decided to ban meat and dairy products from official council functions to make the “planet more sustainable” – a move which caused uproar in some circles.

Schools in Oxfordshire also have two days a week where the menu is meat and dairy free.

Cllr Iain McIntosh who presents this motion, said: “Following discussions with many farmers, businesses, and members of the public, there is considerable concern that as Powys County Council is under the control of Labour and the Liberal Democrats, a meat and dairy ban may be introduced here too.

“This council therefore calls upon the Labour/Lib Dem administration to commit to serve good quality meat and dairy products provided locally where possible at all official meetings and events where food is to be served and at all council run buildings all Powys schools and colleges where food is served, for the remainder of this term of administration. ”


Cllr McIntosh added that vegetarian and vegan food should be an “option.” His motion will be seconded by fellow Tory, Cllr Les George.

Last year the school catering budget was over £2.2million.

If the motion is successful, the financial costings which need to accompany each notice of motion suggest that this budget will need to be increased.

But how much on top of the £2.2 million cannot be calculated until “further analysis” is done.

The report said that “a significant amount” of work would need to happen to identify and establish new contracts with local suppliers.

The report adds that in some Powys schools the menu includes two meat free days in every three weeks.

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Cynan again
Cynan again
1 year ago

Tories “fear” schools going to vegan or vegetarian menus. They “fear” this? How utterly absurd. Their slavish devotion to free market economics, to economic Darwinism is so fragile! All of a sudden it’s “save our wealthy meat producing donors”! Most people are not going to give up meat unless they have to. But a certain party’s fiscal vandalism and abject incompetence has made meat unaffordable for many. So schools, starved of competent funding from competent government are looking at cheaper, just as filling, just as healthy alternatives. It is no hardship being vegetarian. I’ve done it for years. This isn’t… Read more »

Richard 1
Richard 1
1 year ago
Reply to  Cynan again

There is something really, really weird about tories, isn’t there.

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
1 year ago
Reply to  Cynan again

I’m surprised that Powys councillors are not forcing the kids to eat processed beaks and claws so in thrall to chicken factory bosses are they. As a 52 year time served veggie the BS spouted by the meat industry paid propaganda merchants really gets my goat…

1 year ago

Is this the same Tory party who hang like the sword of Damocles over farmers and farming, who engineered Brexit, and then made deals with NZ and Australia which the NFU and FUW say are destroying farmers, who the Torys now claim to support.What a duplicitous odious bunch of chancers, their attitude to feeding hungry English children shows how much they really care. Liars.

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