A random population survey administered by mail to examine lay people's views of children's food policies and their associations with demographics, personal values and confidence in authorities was conducted among adults in Victoria, Australia. Three hundred and seventy-seven people responded (response rate 57.6%). The questionnaire contained 35 items about children's healthy eating policy options plus details like personal values, confidence and demographic items. There was widespread support for healthy school food policies. The strongest support was for life skills education and school-based nutrition and physical education programmes. Many age-related associations indicated that people >48 years were more in favour of healthy eating policies than younger people. There were fewer statistically significant associations with parent status and sex. In contrast, many associations showed that respondents with strong equity–harmony values and those with least confidence in the authorities were most in favour of healthy eating policies for schoolchildren. It is concluded that there is widespread support for school-based health and nutrition education and for active school food policies. However, differences between demographic and values groups suggest the need for caution in the promotion of public health nutrition initiatives among schoolchildren.
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