As new hospital food rules are introduced, the CIEH asks is enough being done?

Publication Date: 29th August 2014

Subject: Food safety

The Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH) today welcomed health secretary Jeremy Hunt’s proposals for ‘legally binding’ improved standards of food on offer to hospital patients.

However, as supporters of Sustain’s Campaign For Better Hospital Food, the CIEH questioned whether these proposals would go far enough.

Principal Policy Officer Jenny Morris, MBE, said: ‘The CIEH welcomes the move to improve hospital food and looks forward to seeing a real difference in the food and drink on offer. But in order to make a real impact there must be more transparency and proper accountability. Therefore, we agree with Sustain that public consultation on standards is needed, that the standards should be within legislation and that there should be robust monitoring of achievements.’

The Campaign For Better Hospital Food has called for mandatory nutritional, environmental and ethical standards for food served to patients in NHS hospitals in England.

These standards would ensure that hospital food promotes health, protects the environment and supports ethical food and farming practices.

The Campaign for Better Hospital Food’s coordinator, Alex Jackson, said: ‘We want to see hospital food standards set down in legislation, similarly to school food standards, and therefore universally applied to all hospitals and protected by publicly elected representatives for generations to come.’

Notes to editors:

  • For media enquiries please contact Brian Cowan on 020 7827 5922 or 07721 456727 or email
  • Spokespeople are available for comment
  • The Campaign for Better Hospital Food represents an alliance of 100 national organisations in calling for the introduction of legislation to set hospital food standards, see
  • Sustain: The alliance for better food and farming was launched on 17 June 1999. It was formed by merging The National Food Alliance and the Sustainable Agriculture Food and Environment (SAFE) Alliance, both of which had been established for over 10 years.
  • The Scottish government introduced minimum nutrient and food provision standards in hospitals in 2008.
  • The standards based on those developed in Scotland were adopted by Wales in 2011.

About the Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH):

  • The CIEH is the professional voice for environmental health practitioners representing over 10,000 members working in the public, private and non-profit sectors. CIEH ensures the highest standards of professional competence in its members, in the belief that through environmental health action people's health can be improved.
  • Environmental health practitioners working in local government are responsible, for assessing public health and environmental health risks to communities and individuals and ensuring environmental protection is maintained
  • For more information visit



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