Healthy meals for our kids

2024 June 20

Fairness for every generation starts right from childhood. Supported by this new policy, our National School Food Program is a direct investment in the future of our kids. This will support families, parents, and kids by providing school meals, so our youngest can reach their full potential – feeling healthy and happy

The Rt. Hon. Justin Trudeau, Prime Minister of Canada

Every child deserves the best start in life. But today, too many children in Canada don’t get the food they need. Study after study has shown that kids learn better on a full stomach. That’s why school food programs are so important – they support families and help kids get the nutrition they need to learn and grow.

With Budget 2024, we’re making sure every generation gets a fair, healthy future – starting right from childhood.

Today, the Prime Minister, Justin Trudeau, unveiled the federal government’s National School Food Policywhich outlines our plan to create and deliver the National School Food Program across Canada.

With an investment of $1 billion over five years, the National School Food Program, included in Budget 2024, will provide meals to up to 400,000 more kids every year, beyond those served by existing school food programs. This will mean peace of mind for parents and healthy meals for kids – helping them learn, grow, and get the best start in life. On average, the National School Food Program is expected to save participating families with two kids up to $800 a year in grocery bills.

The new Policy sets out a vision, principles, and objectives for school food programming across Canada, and will guide the creation of the National School Food Program in collaboration with provinces, territories, and Indigenous partners, with a focus on accessibility, flexibility, inclusivity, sustainability, and better health.

The National School Food Program is part of our work to support families and make life cost less. This includes the Canada Child Benefit, which is providing families with up to $7,437 per child this benefit year, Canada-wide Early Learning and Child Care, which has already reduced fees for regulated child care by half on average across the country, and the Canadian Dental Care Plan, which will make trips to the dentist more affordable for up to 9 million uninsured Canadians. Confident countries invest in themselves, and these investments grow and build our communities, our families, and our economy.

These are just some of the things that we’re doing in Budget 2024 to build a better and fairer future for every generation. We’re also building more homes, improving health care, and investing in innovation – so that every Canadian has a fair chance to succeed.