First, as chronicled here, our lunches are vastly improved over last year. We are serving a variety of nutritious choices every day featuring fresh fruits and vegetables and the notable absence of highly processed foods.
Second, as our lunch participation rates start to rise, our lunch will only get better. We have a lot of fixed costs and can serve a lot more lunches with many of the resources we have. There are things that we need, no doubt, but the more lunches we buy, the more money we'll have to put back into the food. By law, school lunch programs are self-supporting.
So, what will your participation get you? Here's the vision for the future from our food services consultant, Julia van Loon:
- Meals cooked from scratch. Although we have already made a lot of progress in this area, Julia wants to take things much farther. Many of the "kitchens" in our district don't have the space or equipment to do everything from scratch.
- A central commissary. With some work on the high school kitchen, we can prepare more foods there to be delivered to the rest of the district. Julia says that by making everything from scratch - entrees, sauces, dressing, etc., we will have control over the ingredients and thus the nutritive value of our meals.
- Taste tests and samples to help kids try new foods.
- More fresh, more local and more organic foods.