Big school districts reject USDA lunch recipes

Michelle Obama's latest push for healthier and more enjoyable school lunches has been slammed for being prohibitively expensive and for having low nutritional value.
Michelle Obama's latest push for healthier and more enjoyable school lunches has been slammed for being prohibitively expensive and for having low nutritional value.

A series of 226 USDA recipes specially designed to meet Michelle Obama's school health mandate have been slammed by major school districts for failing to meet "the trends of today" and for clashing with "cultural diversity." Beyond that, a recent survey on the recipes published in the Journal of Child Nutrition and Management goes as far as claiming that the recipes fail to meet the USDA's own nutrition requirements.

"The majority of [school nutrition] directors," the survey said, "perceived that the USDA recipes do not adequately support the following issues: menu planning for dark green vegetables and red/orange vegetables, and compliance with meal pattern specifications regarding 'no added sugar,' 'no syrup,' and 'sodium.'"

The source added that schools 25 to 50 percent of schools "have other recipes they prefer; [that] the recipes are not current with today's trends (40.4%); [that] there is not enough variety and selection in the USDA recipes, [that] they use mainly pre-made items at the SN program, and [that] the USDA recipes are not student friendly."

Beyond the lack of nutritional value, most school nutrition directors have said that the recipes cost prohibitive amount of money. This survey is the latest in a long chain of setbacks to the first lady's attempts at making school lunches both nutrition and delicious.

To learn more about how your food service department can maintain or build sales while using quality ingredients, consider Food Service Solutions' flexible cafeteria software. Our free or reduced meal software makes it easier for your school to get reimbursements, and our accounting software helps you quickly maximize your profits. Contact us at 1(800) 425-1425, or send us an email at sales@foodserve.com to learn more.

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