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Getting hands on with Incredible Edibles 2017

Pictured at the launch of Incredible Edibles are (l-r) are Victoria Olaru (9), Sophie O'Connor (10), Katie Maguire (10), Ruby Deegan (10) and Valentina Airoldi (9) from St. Philip's SNS, Clonsilla

Schools who have registered for the Incredible Edibles initiative are starting to receive their free grow bags. Incredible Edibles aims to teach primary school students how to grow and cook their very own delicious, fresh and seasonal Irish fruit, vegetables and herbs. This is the perfect project for schools to get involved with to create awareness of the new healthy eating recommendations to eat between five and seven fruit and vegetables per day.

Free, fun-filled and educational resources for primary level students are available for those who have registered for this initiative. These resources contain lessons on food origin, the health benefits of a diet rich in yummy fruit and vegetables and cooking tasks that will allow kids to enjoy eating more delicious fruit and vegetables by sampling them in various recipes. Schools will also get grow bags that will allow students to get out of the classroom, breathe in some fresh air, and watch the seeds they planted be brought to life.

The five incredible Edibles characters; Colleen Potato, Ciara Carrot, Suzie Strawberry, Tadgh Turnip and Larry Lettuce

Each grow pack sent out contains seeds, compost and everything else necessary to grow tasty potatoes, red juicy strawberries, green leafy lettuce, fresh turnips and bright orange carrots. This year, chives have been added to the grow packs to show children that adding herbs to meals is just as delicious as adding flavouring to meals, but a lot healthier. Primary school children love to get their hands dirty as has been shown through the increasing interest in schools to participate in Incredible Edibles. The amount of schools that have registered for this year’s initiative has reached an all-time high of over 1,600 schools, an impressive 33% increase in registrations from last year.

The Incredible Edibles tasks relate to growing and caring for fruit and vegetables, as well as learning about food origin and buying Irish produce. The five tasks can be submitted to Agri Aware in a logbook format where three winners will be chosen amongst all submissions. Teachers should include lots of photographs of the children digging-in and caring for their fruit and vegetable plants, as well as drawings and samples of Incredible Edibles activities from the task booklet in your submission. A host of prizes ranging from gardening resources for the school to a class day trip to Family Farm, developed by Agri Aware and Dublin Zoo will be available for the lucky winners.

Incredible Edibles was launched this year in St Phillip’s SNS Clonsilla and broadcasted on RTÉ News2Day on February 14th 2017 in celebration of the initiative’s ninth year running with the help of fourth class students who love eating fruit and vegetables and professional chef Lizzy from Lizzy’s Little Kitchen in County Kerry.

If you didn’t have the time to register you can still start growing your own produce by following the Incredible Edibles tasks and growing videos that are available on both www.incredibleedibles.ie and YouTube which are easy to follow and show you the very basics of sowing and growing.

The Incredible Edibles team are very excited to see how schools progress as well as their submissions at the end of the project.

Happy growing!