Back To School With Healthier Lunch
Mandated standards for healthier school lunches were introduced this fall featuring more vegetables of specific color, lower sodium and more whole grains.
We’ve been working on this for a couple years. We’re ahead of the curve on the whole grains. We started that last year and they’ve increased fruits and vegetables.”
Natrona County School District, Food Service Manager, MIke Pyska says the district is right on target for sodium levels, which, he says is getting easier as manufacturers get on board. Other changes include decreased protein and increased diversity of vegetables. He says they’ll switch to Romaine lettuce for more dark, leafy greens, plus include more orange and red vegetables.
He says its too early for feedback on what students think.
Pyska says the changes do increase the cost of feeding students. The USDA supplements meal costs based on the degree of compliance. Of the $2.40 to $2.65 cost per meal, Pyska says the USDA is paying an additional six cents.