Forest Green Rovers has launched a new range of vegan school meal products as healthy meat-free alternatives for children.
The ‘Little Green Devils’ range – developed in-house at the vegan football club – aims to support the growing movement to introduce meat and dairy free days on school menus across the UK.
The tasty range includes vegetable balls and burgers which are all 100% vegan, allergen free, uncoated and non-fried.
FGR has worked with some of the largest school caterers in the UK, including the teams at Birmingham Citiserve and Hampshire HC3S to ensure the products stand up to the demands of being the central protein source on a school meals menu.
There’s already been significant interest in the products from many caterers and wholesalers, who between them serve meals in over 8,000 schools across the UK.
The products will be made from autumn 2018 in a dedicated new factory near the club’s stadium in Gloucestershire, which is powered by Ecotricity’s 100% green energy.
The packaging of each product is fully sustainable – made with a cardboard outer and a pioneering compostable liner and label.
Dale Vince, FGR chairman, said: “We’d like to be in every school at least once a week because that would be a lovely thing to do. It’s about getting kids to eat healthier foods that can be vegan and free of all 14 major allergens – so it’s super healthy but also has some football heritage which may encourage young kids to get involved.
“I don’t see why we couldn’t go international as we’ve been approached by universities so I can see it very quickly going beyond schools and maybe the country.”
Forest Green Rovers became the world’s first vegan football club in 2016, after receiving accreditation from the Vegan Society.
It already runs Fit2Last sessions at the club – a fun and interactive educational programme that is delivered to schools and the local community.
The sessions include Information on a vegan diet, healthy eating and making matchday food, to help young people get a better understanding of the health and environmental benefits of a plant based diet.