Using Healthy Foods Means Struggles For School Nutrition Programs

School officials want children to eat more fruit and fewer french fries, but the fruit costs more and that's causing problems for child-nutrition programs statewide.

School lunches already have to meet federal nutrition standards, but the more popular a la carte items don't. That's changing as school districts replace fruit drinks with 100 percent juice drinks. Officials tell the Winston-Salem Journal that as a result, profit is shrinking.

Officials say child-nutrition programs also have to pay for state-mandated salary increases, and the cost of fuel has increased as well. As school officials replace a la carte items, such as french fries, with healthier options, sales decline.

In 2005, a pilot program for the nutrition standards was started in 124 elementary schools in seven school systems. None of the schools could meet the nutrition standards and lost more than $330,000 in just five months.


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  • by Cactus Location: Strabane, NC on Feb 25, 2008 at 04:20 PM
    By the way healthy food habits begin at home not at school. This should not be a "Nanny" state.
  • by Cactus Location: Strabane, NC on Feb 25, 2008 at 04:17 PM
    Jammie Oliver (english cheff) convinced the English school system to provide more nutritional food. The system failed. Parents were bringing food to school for their kids, kids were leaving school grounds to visit the chip shops. This will take time and education about food value, we can not stop "fat" overnight. Kids that are fat when they are 8 or 9 will be fat when they are 60. So what will our parents do? I bet they will be at McD or P Hut to keep their kids happy. Count on your medical insurance going up, your medical expenses going up, and fat kids staying fat.
  • by J Location: NC on Feb 25, 2008 at 01:50 PM
    Let tell you when all this healthier bs started....at our high school we had 2 lunch lines and a salad bar that was up everyday. In one line, you had the normal menu option, in the other you had pizza and fries b/c that was like the most popular or you could eat salad. But then we had all these obese kids coming up in elementary and middle school, so they cut back on everything and didn't have much of anything that was good. Salad even though it's healthy was only an option 2 or 3 days a week, pizza was hardly ever and we started having baked french fries, sorry but school fries are not good when baked. PARENTS STOP LETTING YOUR KIDS OVEREAT AND SUBSTITUTE CANDY BARS FOR BREAKFAST AND LUNCH, AND CUT BACK ON THEIR INTAKE, GIVE THEM SOME LIMITS, AND LET THEM HAVE SOME OUTSIDE ACTIVITY! Before you know it the schools will be serving a cracker with a slice of cheese for lunch.
  • by Rick Location: Washington on Feb 24, 2008 at 06:32 PM
    This is embarrassing and reflects very poor creativity and leadership at the top and throughout our education systems. The health and well-being of our children and grandchildren is critical to our future. Ensuring the best possible school nutrition for every student should be a no-brainer and well worth the reassignment of the necessary funds. What happened to all the lottery income? Lets hope we can find some really capable and committed talent in November, throughout our state and our communities, to educate and support our children properly. Please choose carefully. Remember our children and grandchildren are the ones who will ensure we have a healthy and long life.
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