50 million pieces of fruit later, how a Brigg Tesco employee has shown how every little idea helps!

By Scunthorpe Telegraph | Posted: 9 Apr 2018

A North Lincolnshire woman's idea for Tesco to give shoppers' children free fruit has been hailed as a success.

The leading UK supermarket's ground-breaking Free Fruit for Kids initiative has proved a real hit with children and parents, with more than 50 million pieces of free fruit given to children since it launched almost two years ago.

The scheme was the brainchild of Maria Simpson, a customer assistant at the Brigg superstore, who suggested giving free fruit to parents for their children to eat during shopping trips as an alternative to sweets.

The idea was taken up, and was so well received by customers that Tesco decided to launch it nationwide, with stands now in 800 stores.

Maria said: "Over 50 million, wow! This means that children across the UK have had a healthy and free piece of fruit from Tesco over 50 million times! It’s incredibly humbling for me to know that children are benefiting from this. They love it and the parents love it too."

The initiative is just one part of Tesco's drive to help make it easier for colleagues and customers to eat more healthily as part of its Little Helps plan.

Alessandra Bellini, Tesco's chief customer officer, said: "I’m incredibly proud that a simple idea from one of our colleagues has gone on to have such a big impact. 50 million pieces of free fruit goes a long way towards creating healthy eating habits that will stay with children as they grow up."

As well as giving away 50 million pieces of fruit, Tesco can also reveal the nation's children are opting for bananas as their preferred free healthy snack. More than 21 million have been snapped up by kids while their parents are shopping, followed by 19 million apples and 10 million oranges.

Tam Fry, head spokesperson for the National Obesity Forum, added: "Only 16 per cent of children are eating the recommended five-a-day and this is why Tesco's Free Fruit for kids is so important.

"Getting more kids to enjoy healthy food takes time and I commend Tesco for their long-term commitment on this and encourage them to continue to keep it going to help many more kids eat their five-a-day."

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