It’s Hedgerow Week! This week aims to emphasise and promote the importance of protecting the quality of our native Irish hedgerows in order to support habitats for all species who rely on them.
To celebrate Irish Bioeconomy Week, Agri Aware, Beacon Bioeconomic Research Centre and UCD Agriculture & Food Science teamed up to bring the 5th class students of D7 Educate Together an educational module “Gut Health – It’s a pig deal!” in the family farm at Dublin Zoo. The students got to learn how after a piglet is weaned from its mother, the transition from milk to solid food can cause bad bacteria to grow in the pig’s large intestine, leading to sickness and infection.
Natural remedies to encourage the growth of good bacteria and fight off bad bacteria are mushrooms and seaweed.This is because they both contain special types of carbohydrates, which don’t break down easily in the stomach. Instead, these carbohydrates get broken down in the large intestine, and help to improve pig gut health!
The students then received a tour of family farm, with a special stop at the pig’s pen to have a go at feeding them mushrooms themselves and a certificate of achievement to bring home!
Winners of the 2019 Incredible Edibles project unveiled at the National Botanic Gardens, Glasnevin
On Friday, (October 11th, 2019) Agri Aware, Ireland’s agri-food educational body were joined by 3rd and 4th class pupils of St. Oliver Plunkett's National School, Killina, Co. Kildare at the National Botanic Gardens where they were crowned winners of the 2019 Incredible Edibles project. The lucky students got to dig in to a day of learning about all things gardening with a planting workshop, a tour of the native Irish plants, Viking house and the infamous Palm glasshouse!
The Incredible Edibles project undertaken by some 1300 schools in 2019 aims to educate and empower children with knowledge of the full farm to fork journey, with schools receiving a free kit containing all the must have tools to start their very own school garden. From compost to seed potatoes, the pack also includes a host of accompanying curriculum linked educational resources. The importance of empowering students through food education is paramount to ensuring health in later life.
Speaking about the project Alan Jagoe, Chairman of Agri Aware said “It is great to see the impact the Incredible Edibles programme has had on the school children here today. Whilst new figures relating to obesity are positive with 78% of children within a healthy weight range, awareness and exposure to fruit and vegetables is important for a healthy balanced diet as they grow. This year over 1300 schools participated nationally, which equates to around 47,000 students right across Ireland, learning where their food comes from and how to produce food for themselves. The aim of this programme is to encourage healthier diet habits and ultimately lead to healthier children and adults down the line”.
The initiative is supported by the Department of Education and Skills and the Department of Health and Children, through the Healthy Ireland framework, the Department of Agriculture, Bord Bia and the horticulture industry.
Registration is now open for the 2020 Incredible Edibles’ project and you can visit www.incredibleedibles.ie to register today!