LONDON, ONT. -- The Great Big Crunch is an initiative that aims to draw attention to the need for a healthy school programs across the country.

Local politicians, community organizations, parents and teachers joined the virtual event, taking a big bite out of fresh apples, making noise to draw attention to food security, literacy and school food initiatives.

The Coalition for Healthy School Food, along with the Middlesex-London Food Policy Council, is advocating for a national school food program.

"Canada is the only G7 country that doesn’t have a national school food program. This is really what we are hoping to see, the government of 2019 committed itself to the importance of a school food program, so we are hoping to get them to follow through with that commitment," says the chair of the Middlesex-London Food Policy Council, Benjamin D. Hill.

The Coalition for Healthy School Food is asking the federal government to invest in healthy, universal school food programs across Canada with the vision that all students across the country would eventually have access to healthy meals at school every day.

"School food programs provide opportunities for students to learn about different fruits and vegetables, be exposed to them, and quite often try them for the first time, which is so important in developing strong food literacy," says Andrew Fleet, the co-founder of Growing Chefs Ontario.

The current student food model in London is a mid-morning snack, but organizations would like to see the government invest in the national school food program – to incorporate a healthy snack and lunch for every student.

The national coordinator for the Coalition for health schools, Debbie Fields, says the Canada Food Guide is a great example to follow and implement in schools across the country.

"Half vegetables and fruit, quarter protein, quarter starch. So could we have that food guide be the basis of a national school food program in Canada?"

To find out more about the healthy food program visit the coalition's website.