Sunday, April 6, 2008

New Zealand school to ban birthday cakes

A New Zealand school is to ban children sharing birthday cake as the government introduces new guidelines to restrict unhealthy food being sold to pupils, a report said on Friday.

Oteha Valley School in Auckland has told parents not to allow their children to bring birthday cakes to school for friends to share, The New Zealand Herald reported on Friday.

The school said the ban had been introduced because the government was implementing new healthy eating guidelines for schoolchildren in June.

Oteha Valley principal Megan Bowden said many families would consider the number of cakes being brought into classes as unhealthy.

"In a lot of schools, you have gluts of birthdays," Bowden said.

"There are lots and lots of children born in September and October, and you might in a class have four birthday cakes in a week."

A Ministry of Education spokesman said government guidelines only restricted what types of food could be sold from shops at schools and did not include food brought from home.