Step 8: Place and Promotion

brand promotion strategy

In Step 8, we cover placement of Everyday food and drink in prominent positions in your canteen. Where and how we place items affect the choices students make so putting Everyday items in prominent positions can encourage students to make healthy choices.

Everyday up front

When you picture a Healthy School Canteen, what does it look like? What immediately catches your eye?

An important part of the NSW Healthy School Canteen Strategy is displaying Everyday foods and drinks.

Display Everyday food at the front of displays at eye level in fridges, on shelves or on the countertop. Only Everyday foods and drinks should be displayed at the “point of sale” (next to cash registers or where money is exchanged).

In the fridge

In fridges with glass doors put Everyday drinks at eye-level so students can see them clearly. Position water, plain milk, flavoured milk, 99% fruit juices, and smoothies at the top of the fridge and put Occasional drinks such as diet soft drinks on the bottom shelf of the fridge.

In pie warmers and food display cabinets

Make sure students can see some of the Everyday hot and cold foods on the menu. Displaying Everyday food is helpful to younger students who are more likely to look at the foods on display when deciding what to eat, rather than choosing from the menu. Ensure that pies and sausage rolls aren’t visible in pie warmers as they are Occasional foods.

On the counter

Place Everyday foods and drinks at the front of the counter and near the point of sale so the students making last minute decisions are choosing healthier options.

The counter is the ideal place to display Everyday snacks such as plain air-popped popcorn, fruit, fruit cups, veggie sticks and dip, yoghurt and muesli set in a ice bath (large bowl filled with ice).

Trial displaying different foods to see what works best and change them regularly to keep it interesting. Display a snack prominently on the counter for a week and compare your sales for that item to the previous week. Trial a number of different snacks over several weeks, then choose the three snacks that were the most successful. Create a display of those Everyday snacks on the counter. Rotate the display throughout the year to keep it fresh and exciting.

Vending machines

Don’t forget the Strategy also applies to vending machines. Everyday foods and drinks should be promoted in vending machines by filling each machine with at least ¾ (75%) Everyday foods and drinks.

If there is a limited range of Everyday snacks to fill a non-refrigerated machine, then schools should aim to fill at least 60% of this machine with Everyday food.

Talk to your vending machine supplier about rearranging the machine to promote Everyday foods and drinks.


Activity 1: On the counter

Think about your canteen counter.

  • What foods are displayed?
  • Are there only Everyday foods or drinks on display?
  • Do these items sell well?

Think of ways you could incorporate Everyday foods or drinks as a display on the counter. If you don’t have a POS system, how could you track the sales from the counter?

Activity 2: Items displayed in your canteen

Take a look at where and how items are displayed in your canteen.

  • Are there Occasional foods positioned up front at the counter that need to be swapped with Everyday foods?
  • Does the fridge layout need to be rearranged to position Everyday drinks at eye level and Occasional drinks out of sight?
  • What else could you do to present Everyday items in an appealing way?
  • Consider the way Everyday foods are promoted throughout the school.

Activity 3: Complete the Marketing Checklist

  • Are the Everyday foods most visible? Can students see mostly Everyday items when they’re at the counter?
  • Is the menu clearly displayed?
  • Are Everyday foods displayed at eye level?
  • Are Everyday drinks displayed at eye level in the fridge?
  • Is water easily available?
  • Are Everyday foods displayed next to the cash registers to encourage purchase?
  • Is the canteen a good place to be? Is it attractive, friendly and engaging?

Activity 4: Vending Machines

Contact the vending machine supplier to discuss how you need drinks and snacks to be displayed and work with them to ensure at least ¾ of the machine is filled with Everyday foods or drinks and they are displayed at eye level.

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