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Ice packs in lunch boxes - yes or no?

29 replies

rachelp73 · 16/09/2008 21:09

Do you put an ice pack in your child's lunchbox? DS1 just started reception and is enjoying his packed lunches. I haven't been putting an ice pack in mainly because the only ones we've got are the fairly big block type and would take up too much space in his lunchbox. He's had ham sarnies for the last 5 times and come to no harm so far. I make it about 8.30am so I guess he'd eat it about 4 hours later. Also in there is a yoghurt, cheese and fruit (all from the fridge) which might help keep it a bit cooler.

Am I risking him getting food poisoning? No idea. The teachers wouldn't let them leave their lunchboxes next to a radiator all morning, would they?

OP posts:
Ready4anotherCoffee · 16/09/2008 21:48

I put in a little gel pack each morning, partly because ds's fave sarnies are tuna mayo.

I would imagine, they would be fine, but if you look in woolies or or similar they would be a more convient alternative

LurkerOfTheUniverse · 16/09/2008 21:51

yes, i have mini ice-packs, from a pound shop or somewhere similar

Friendlypizzaeater · 16/09/2008 21:56

Frfeeze his yoghurt/FF by the time dinbner comes roun d they have defrosted and lunch is cool (I also sometimes pop in a couple of frozen mini sausages)

I started doing this after my LO brought fruit jelly home - he couldn't eat it as it had gone runny, so if its warm enough to melt jelly I decided it was warm enough to give food poisoning .....

LynetteScavo · 16/09/2008 21:56

Er yes, the teachers would let them leave lunchboxes next to a radiator all morning, although schools are generally better now, and some leave luchboxes out side. I was ordered by nursery to put a cool pack in DS2 luch box, adn have been too scared not to ever since.

gigglewitch · 16/09/2008 21:57

we make sure that the stuff is made the night before - often ham or cheese sandwiches as you say, tomatoes, drink of juice - and put it all in the fridge overnight [we put the drink in the freezer for summer term packed lunches!] it seems to keep the whole thing nice and cool. BTW i occasionally put ice packs in but ds1 is a scatterbrain and loses them, thus the fridge/freezer theory. Have been known to put the entire bag in the fridge sometimes but have no idea whether this does much!!

Ready4anotherCoffee · 16/09/2008 21:58

like this

Squiz · 17/09/2008 10:07

Matalan sell tiny icepacks- they're flat and are made out of some kind of silver foil type thing, flexible when defrosted. They're only 3 for £1.50 and are great for kids lunchboxes - although occasionally they do split!

littlestrawberry · 17/09/2008 11:19

Yes, I put mini ice packs in both my boys lunch boxes. I started when DS1 started having yoghurts in his lunchbox but now do it all the time. I tried freezing the tubes of yoghurt but DS1 said they go really runny when defrosted and he was coming home covered in yoghurt so now we've gone back to pots.

dinny · 17/09/2008 11:23

yes, little ice packs, available in lots of places

NorbertDentressangle · 17/09/2008 11:32

I only tend to put ice packs in if DD has something like rice salad (I've got a bit of a paranoia about rice since doing a Basic Food Hygiene course years ago) or its particularly hot -if she has straightforward sandwiches I don't bother.

She often has a frozen Frube too so that helps to keep things cool a bit.

Our mini cool packs were from Woolies and are bright coloured gel in a thick plastic "bag"

seeker · 17/09/2008 14:40

I keep juice cartons in the freezer, put one in the lunch box and it's thawed to delicious slush by lunch time so ds has a nice drink and a cool sandwich. Then you don't have to worry about whether the ice packs come home or not. Simple.

anniebear · 17/09/2008 21:46

I always have done

you can get small ones or slim ones

I always think I wouldnt want warm sandwhiches!!

Plus schools get very warm aprtic with heating on in the cooler months

But am suprised at how many parents dont. Other Mums alwyas seemed really suprised that I put one in!

Oliveoil · 17/09/2008 21:49

I have a set of 3 from Lakeland that I put in

dd1 says that cheese is 'funny' when warm and I know exactly what she means!

asteamedpoater · 17/09/2008 22:17

I bought some gel ice packs from Woolworths, but all the warnings on them have made me paranoid... How easy are they to split, since they all have KEEP OUT OF REACH OF CHILDREN all over them and go on about the gel inside being toxic?... I'm not sure which I'm more paranoid about - food poisoning or ice pack poisoning!

seeker · 17/09/2008 22:32

Honestly-freeze the juice cartons. Problem solved.

SheSellsSeashellsByTheSeashore · 17/09/2008 22:36

dd1 is on dinners so she only has her packed lunch to take to dancing. she has a lunch bag rather than a box from tesco and a blue ice block thing thats filled with water.

it fits nicely into the bottom of the bag and i can still fit in sarnies or flapjacks/cakes in a tupperware and two bits of fruit plus her drink bottle.

shergar · 17/09/2008 23:21

asteamedpoater, they can't be that toxic as my friend's son was sent home from his first full day at school after the teachers found him with a blue face, eating the gel ice pack in his lunchbox. He'd mistaken it for a freezer pop! He was fine.

butterflymum · 17/09/2008 23:49

Quote: "it fits nicely into the bottom of the bag"

It is better to put the icepack above the food you are using it for.

Joolyjoolyjoo · 17/09/2008 23:53

The nursery and school have TOLD us to one in, so I daren't disobey them! the first time I did, though, dd came home and asked me "Mum, why did you put a brick in my lunchbox today?" !!

I bought the slim ones after that!

seeker · 17/09/2008 23:54

Freeze juice cartons.

Joolyjoolyjoo · 17/09/2008 23:59

I hear what you're saying, seeker, but I don't buy juice cartons- I'm far too cheap- they have very diluted fruit juice in a plastic bottle, which if frozen might constitute a lethal weapon! It IS a good idea, though. My only other worry is that the teacher might not realise and assume there was no ice-pack, and I would get another snotty note home (already had one cos dd swore blind I didn't tell her 45000 times that she was to tell the teacher she was getting the bus home that day), and shamefuly enough, I am scared of the teacher

MrsBates · 18/09/2008 01:16

I put a gel pack on top of their stuff. That way if they get into fisticuffs over the sarnies they have a handy cold compress for any nasty swelling. Also put in a paper towel to use a a field dressing.

rachelp73 · 18/09/2008 14:22

at MrsBates.

OP posts:
retiredgoth · 18/09/2008 14:28

....more evidence of my sub-standard parenting (as if more were required)

I have never even DREAMED of doing such a thing....

(though I do freeze yoghurt tubes. But only because otherwise I run out of them....)

SheSellsSeashellsByTheSeashore · 18/09/2008 14:35

ah but the bag is very narrow at the top. would it better at the side/back of the bag then?

she is only at dancing for an hour its only there to cool down the cakes etc. that i always bake too late

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