Food safety: choking prevention

Ensuring children are kept safe within early years settings is a priority and for children under five choking prevention is an important part of this.

Updates to the Early Years Foundation Stage framework reflect this, with 3.29 making clear that children should be supervised whilst eating, and a footnote added to paragraph 3.46 directing providers to guidance on food preparation.

Tragically, a child dies in the UK every month from choking and hundreds more require hospital treatment. It can happen quickly and it can happen to anyone. The Food Standards Agency have issued some useful resources in the form of two posters which we would like settings to be encouraged to display where food is prepared and served to children as a helpful reminder of how to minimise the risk of choking.

The Food Safety Page on the Help for Early Years Providers website also outlines important messages and links to useful resources regarding keeping children safe whilst eating. Please can you display the poster and table within your setting. The Food Safety Page on the Help for Early Years Providers online platform can be accessed for more information.