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School Cafeterias on the Frontline

By Nicole Reed, Communications Manager, MenuMax

In a recent post we talked about the topic of restaurant nutrition coming under the national spotlight. This year has seen consumers become increasingly health conscious, and they are demanding detailed nutritional information when dining out. The same is true for schools.

In December 2010, the National Restaurant Association conducted a survey of over 1,500 chefs and compiled a list of the top 20 trends in the foodservice industry for 2011. One of the trends named was “nutritionally balanced children’s meals”. In recent months First Lady Michelle Obama has brought national attention to her campaign to end childhood obesity, and she is looking to the restaurant industry as well as schools to lead the fight in this effort.

The school cafeteria lies on the frontline of this issue. Today, Ms. Obama is participating in a conference call at the White House to discuss The HealthierUS Schools Challenge (HUSSC). According to an article on “the HealthierUS Schools Challenge is USDA’s “Blue Ribbon” program for school nutrition and fitness, as well as a key strategy for ensuring students have access to healthier food in school and are engaged in regular physical activity.  The primary task of the school nutrition program in the HUSSC is ensuring that school menus are as nutritious as possible, incorporating more fruits, vegetables and whole grains.”

Many schools are looking for new ways to increase the nutritional value of school lunches, while keeping the cost down. One way they can achieve this is to invest in a menu management system like MenuMax. With MenuMax users can obtain nutritional analysis of their recipes, and manage their food costing based on order guides, all from one easy to use application.

There are new innovations being made every day in the foodservice industry. By utilizing technology schools can improve their menu’s nutrition and manage cost all while helping to improve the health of our nation’s children.

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