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The Lunch Box Brings Nutritional Food Back to Schools

9/25/2009 12:00:00 AM

Tags: Whole Foods, Chef Ann Cooper, The Lunch Box, school lunch, school lunch revolution, school lunch food

Nutritious food is an important factor in how well a child performs at school. So I’m constantly appalled at what my kids report is available in their school cafeterias: fast food and junk food, highly processed and loaded with fat. How can it be that school cafeterias encourage kids to load up on empty calories, preventing them from getting the nutrition they need? In my mind, this is nothing short of a crime. 

The Lunch Box
The Lunch Box is an online resource that encourages schools to reform their lunch programs to include more healthy options. Photo Courtesy Whole Foods Market. 

Thankfully, a growing chorus of activists agrees. Recently Whole Foods teamed up with Chef Ann Cooper to create The Lunch Box, an online resource that encourages schools to reform their lunch programs. When The Lunch Box website is fully functional, it will offer schools: 

• Priced, scalable recipes that have been nutritionally analyzed

• Training for lunchroom personnel

• How-to videos and photo manuals

• Business tools to help schools budget, make the transition to a made-from-scratch cooking program and work with smaller scale, local vendors who sell natural food.

The Lunch Box also offers parents a way to get involved. Eat lunch with your kids, volunteer to teach a cooking class, plant and maintain a vegetable garden at your child’s school or simply make a donation to keep this important, free website running.

Before my 11-year-old graduates from high school, I’d like to believe that fast food joints will be out and fresh, local cuisine will be in at her school cafeteria. Kudos to Whole Foods and Chef Ann Cooper for helping to make that happen.

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