Tesco Brighouse it is to offer free fruit to children while their parents are shopping in store.
According to the latest research only 10 per cent of boys and seven per cent of girls between the ages of 11 and 18 meet the five-a-day recommendation. On average children in England eat only about three portions, with many eating fewer.
The initiative, which is being launched in over 800 Tesco stores across the UK, is aimed at creating healthy eating habits among children that will stay with them as they grow up, and to make it easier for children to get the fruit and vegetables they need.
The move comes after Tesco checkout operator Maria Simpson suggested giving free fruit to parents for their children to eat during shopping trips as an alternative to sweets.
The idea was taken up by the store and was so well received by customers that Tesco decided to trial the initiative in Scotland to see how it might work on a bigger scale.
Jessica Reynard, manager of the store, based on Huddersfield Road, said: “This will not only help parents ensure their kids get their five a day but it will also help keep them occupied too, making our shopping trip a little easier for customers.
“We are working on a number of projects within our community and we can’t wait to hear our customers feedback about our new initiative.
“Our fruit and veg team are looking forward to encouraging healthier eating.”
Helen Dickens, Diabetes UK interim director of prevention of Type 2 diabetes, said: “Eating fresh fruit is an important part of a healthy diet.
“Unhealthy diets and being overweight can lead to serious health conditions like Type 2 diabetes which is largely preventable by eating well and getting active.”