Campaign to get kids growing their own

Sixty-six schools in the Hemel Hempstead area have signed up to a new campaign aimed at promoting healthy eating and food education

Friday, 17th March 2017, 3:28 pm
Updated Friday, 24th March 2017, 10:54 am
The winning school in last year's Grow & Sow campaign

Pupils will join green-fingered students from 1,384 schools across the south east of England, who are swapping computer screens for runner beans this spring.

Sow & Grow is an initiative set up by innocent drinks and not-for-profit organisation GIY (Grow It Yourself) to encourage kids to get outside, stick their hands in some mud and get growing.

The campaign has reached 6,666 schools – a quarter of all UK primary schools – where students will be taking part in gardening lessons to learn where their food comes from and have fun growing their own veg.

The founder of social enterprise GIY, Michael Kelly, said: “It’s a fact that food growers have a better understanding of nutrition and eat more fruit and veg.

“Over the years we have repeatedly seen how even the simplest food-growing experience can make children passionate about what they eat, and help them develop a greater understanding and ‘food empathy’.

“That’s why we’re so happy to see schools in the south east involved.”

A recent survey by innocent found that 84 per cent of UK parents believe children would be more open to eating fruit and veg if they knew where their food came from.

Brand manager for innocent, Sim Viney, said: “We know that children who grow their own food are more likely to eat fruit and veg, and that kids who develop healthy habits at a young age are more likely to become healthy adults.

“At the moment, nine out of 10 young people are not getting their Five a day, so we’ve started a campaign called Sow & Grow, which will get a quarter of all primary school kids growing veg in their classrooms, and learning where their food comes from.

“We’re hoping the campaign itself will grow in future years. Our ultimate goal is to get every primary school child in the country to experience growing their own veg.”

Schools that have signed up can upload their photos at for the chance to win monthly prizes and see their class crowned as Sow & Grow champions.

Following the repackage of innocent kids drinks, consumers can also win seed packs by following the instructions on pack.

Packs are available in most major supermarkets.