Visit our information hub for ways to promote healthy eating in your organisation during coronavirus.

New long day care criteria come into effect from late July 2020.

The Victorian Menu planning guidelines for long day care provide advice on what to include on, and what to leave off, a healthy menu for 1-5 year old children in care.

We developed these guidelines in 2012 to help Victorian long day care centers provide healthy foods and drinks in line with the Australian Dietary Guidelines and the National Quality Standard.

In May 2020, the following were added to provide clear advice on using these ingredients on long day care menus:

  • Baked items should contain 5g or less of added sugar per serve. Added sugars include brown sugar, caster sugar, icing sugar, raw sugar, white sugar, coconut sugar, golden syrup, honey or rice malt syrup.
  • Limit fats and oils to 10g/ml (2 teaspoons) or less of monounsaturated or polyunsaturated oils/spreads per child per day.
  • Salty and sweet spreads should be used sparingly and not offered every day.
  • Limit sauces very high in salt to less than 5g/ml per serve per child. Sauces such as soy or fish sauce, curry paste, regular tomato sauce and even some pasta sauces are very high in salt and can be harmful in large amounts, especially for young children.

The updated Menu planning guidelines for long day care are out now, and will come into effect on FoodChecker from late July 2020.


It’s never been easier to plan a healthy menu!

The updated Menu planning guidelines for long day care contain everything you need to plan a nutritious menu for your long day care centre.

  • Use the Ingredient quantity guide to find out how much food you’ll need to meet the food group requirements for anywhere between 5-250 children!
  • Check your menu using the Menu planning checklist to see if you need to add or remove some items on the spot.

Then, assess your menu on FoodChecker to get your final, tailored feedback – or get confirmation that it meets the menu planning guidelines!


We have also updated some serve sizes in FoodChecker

This means you might be advised to add a little bit more of some food groups, or you might have more than the minimum requirement for others. Read more.