Quick & Easy Tips to a Healthier Canteen

Sports club canteens can play an important role in influencing healthy food and drink choices at sport, not only through what they sell, but how they are sold and promoted. We have some simple ‘Tips’ to make changes in your canteen to encourage healthier food and drink choices.

  1. Choose one or two tips to implement in any one sport season
  2. Always remember, small gradual changes are easier to make and better accepted than big changes
  3. Always communicate with your club management and community about the changes being made and the health benefits for the children

TIP #1: Rearrange your canteen layout

On your serving bench – remove confectionery, cakes, biscuits & chips from reach and sight, place them towards the back of the canteen
SWAP with:

  • a bowl of fresh fruit or cut up cups of melon/oranges
  • raisin bread or fruit spiced English Muffins
  • Healthy Kids Registered snack bar (refer to the Buyers Guide)
  • Bags of plain/lightly seasoned popcorn (refer to Buyers Guide or pop your own!)
Healthy Canteen Layout

TIP #2: Rearrange your fridge layout

In your drinks fridge – organise your drinks to have the healthier choices at eye level and the less healthy choices at the bottom

This means:

  • water at the top and middle, reduced fat milk drinks below, sports waters, 99% fruit juices then diet soft drinks, regular soft drinks and sports drinks on the bottom
  • Place a bottle of water on the counter if hard to see the fridge and leave the unhealthier bottom shelf products off the counter
Healthy Fridge Layout

TIP #3: Communicate & promote changes

On your menu board or price list – list the healthier items at the top and limit the number and choice of less healthier options at the bottom


  • Swap the list of confectionery with a list of healthier snack options you choose for your counter display
  • Choose your top 2 selling confectionery items and remove the rest form your price list
  • Charge less for healthier items to encourage their purchase
  • If available, use the club’s social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter to communicate with your club members about the healthier foods and drinks available, including healthy meal deals
  • Include a notice of the new healthier food and drink option or a discount voucher for a healthy meal deal in the newsletter or get coaches to hand-out a flyer at training night

TIP #4: Replace popular unhealthy food and drink items for healthier alternatives of the same product

Sometimes its easy to reduce the number of unhealthy food and drinks you offer by swapping them with a lower fat, lower sodium/salt and smaller serving size.