This fall, in celebration of National School Lunch Week (October 10-14), school cafeterias nationwide will host School Lunch – Let’s Grow Healthy, a campaign to help students understand where their food comes from and get excited about healthy school lunch choices.
The campaign, which also coincides with National Farm to School Month, is putting a spotlight on the locally sourced foods served in America’s schools. From peppers and parsley to rice and radishes, local foods are popping up on school lunch trays alongside milk, which is served with every school lunch and almost always locally produced. In fact, a recent national survey revealed that nearly half of school districts offer locally sourced produce. Districts are also helping educate students on the foods produced in their region, with 32% involved in farm to school initiatives and another 41% interested in or planning to implement these initiatives.
Just take a look at how the Burlington School Food Project (Vermont) is connecting students and their families with wholesome, local and fresh foods.
School Lunch – Let’s Grow Healthy is sponsored by the non-profit School Nutrition Association (SNA) and the Milk Processors Education Program (MilkPEP) to highlight all the components of well-balanced school meals. As part of the campaign, cafeterias will feature locally sourced foods on menus, invite farmers into schools to teach kids about how these foods are grown, and provide students with fun activity sheets and handouts for Mom and Dad on the healthy choices available at school.
Lunch Week is a great time for parents to learn more about the good things happening in school cafeterias. KIWI Magazine is sponsoring a national Take Your Parents to Lunch Day to encourage more parents to visit their school cafeterias. To find out more visit http://myhealthyschool.com/.