Tag Archives: school meal

Foodservice Industry Week in Brief: 8/3

Looking for some of the week’s top information? Check out these five stories from the foodservice industry from July 30-August 3.

Burger King Sees 60 Percent Increase in Sales

From Nation’s Restaurant News, Read Full Story

As quarter two came to a close, it looks as though Burger King’s menu additions are paying off.  In a recent Nation’s Restaurant News (NRN) article, it’s been reported the fast food chain has seen a 60 percent increase in their second quarter profits.  This is good news for them as it was just a few months back when they lost their No. 2 ranking to Wendy’s.  NRN also added Burger King is also remodeling over 7,000 units in the U.S. and Canada.  Forty percent of of those locations have been remodeled and so far have seen a 12 to 15 percent increase in sales.

Gluten-Free Food Gaining in Popularity, Is It Needed?

From Huff Post Food, Read Full Story

Gluten-free is everywhere now, from grocery store shelves to restaurant menus.  But it may be misunderstood by thousands of people who think it’s healthier way to eat or will help one to lose weight.  Gluten-free items are intended for those with celiac Disease, also known as a gluten intolerance.  (Read more about celiac Disease on Celiac.com).

In Huff Post Food’s recent findings, 1.8 million Americans have the disease with 1.4 million not yet diagnosed.  But what may be the most interesting of what Huff Post Food found was that 1.6 million people don’t have celiac disease yet follow this diet.  This is where there may be some misconceptions of being a weight-loss solution or a healthier way of eating, when it’s really a form of treatment for those with a gluten intolerance or even non-celiac disease related gluten sensitivity.  So while gluten-free may seem as though it’s the latest food trend, it’s actually something people should discuss with a doctor first.  (But definitely a plus to keep or add to a restaurant menu to help those with celiac disease or a gluten sensitivity).

Combo Deals Aren’t As Popular As They Were Five Years Ago

From NACS Online, Read Full Story

Combo deals–they’re popular among consumers, even much to the point where people memorize the combo’s number and don’t even need to say anything else other than what they’d like to drink with it.  But according to a NACS Online article, combo deal sales are down about one billion servings from 2007.

“A recently released NDP foodservice market research report finds that smaller lunch and supper meals, more and better value offerings, price concerns and composition of meal are among the contributors to combo meal declines,” NACS said.

Manitowoc and NSF International’s Partnership

From Restaurant Facility Business, Read Full Story

Okay, while this isn’t news from this last week, we just came across it and had to share as it’s about one of the many manufacturers we work with.

In a late June Restaurant Facility Business story, they reported NSF International is now the preferred provider of sanitation services for leading global foodservice equipment company, Manitowoc Foodservice.  Through this collaboration, the two will work to provide “safer, higher quality foodservice equipment to companies worldwide,” said RFB.

School’s in Session! Recap of Updated USDA Guidelines

From The Central Blog, Read Full Story

It’s that time of year again–back to school! While the kids were out on vacation, school foodservices certainly had some learning to do and changes to make to meet the updated USDA guidelines that went into affect on July 1.  Visit the Central blog for a complete guide to the changes–and let us know below about how your school has made changes!

 

A Deeper Look At New USDA Guidelines for Schools

In last Tuesday’s blog, Central looked into schools serving meals three times a day—and it really shows just how times have changed.  Thanks to a rough economy, many children eat over half to all of their meals at school during the week.

In general, “the school meal” has been a hot topic, perhaps really kicking off in 2010 when the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act was signed and First Lady Michelle Obama started the Let’s Move! campaign.

It’s been a few years since those initiatives have been put in place and with anything, there are always changes and revisions.

On January 26, the USDA released new guidelines to improve nutritional quality.

To summarize, schools will have to offer more fruit, vegetables and whole grains, provide fat-free or low-fat milk, limit calories based on age and reduce saturated fat, trans fat and sodium.  Also, every three years school lunches will be reviewed to ensure they are consistent with the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act.  (Further detail of changes reviewed later on in this blog).

Schools will have to start to implement these changes on July 1, 2012—which kicks off a three year phase for all of the changes included in the document, “Nutritional Standards in the National School Lunch and School Breakfast Programs.”

At a whopping 80 pages, this document is no quick read and is a lot of information to sift through. Because there are so many revisions, the USDA isn’t leaving schools in the dark.

On March 1, the USDA released a very informative (and shorter) document, “Questions & Answers to the Final Rule, “Nutrition Standards in the School Lunch and Breakfast Programs,” which focuses on specific changes piece by piece.

It’s not surprising the very first question is, “Why is USDA setting new meal patterns and dietary specifications for school meals?”

Well, the signing of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010 was a huge step in school nutrition because it was the first change in the last 15 years.  So, going back to the concept that “times have changed,” they really have.

In this chart by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, the rise in childhood obesity is clear.  From 1963 to 1970, four percent of six to 11-year-olds were overweight, and 5 percent of 12 to 19- year-olds.  There were subtle changes from 1971 through 1980, and then there was a big jump from 1988 to 1994 when the rate jumped to 11 percent for children between the ages of six and 19.

Today? Almost every one out of three children is overweight.

With many children getting many if not all of their nutritious meals at school, the USDA knew it was time for some changes to be made.

To go into further detail, the USDA lists the following as the main differences to the old rules and the new ones:

  • Food planning based on age and grade group
  • Fruits and vegetables now two separate food components
  • “Offer vs. Serve” approach, to have students choose at least a half a cup of fruits or vegetables
  • Weekly grains ranges along with a daily minimum requirement—and by the third year, all grains served must be whole grain-rich
  • Only serve unflavored or flavored fat-free milk or unflavored low-fat milk
  • Minimum and maximum calorie levels
  • Two intermediate sodium target reductions, then a final one
  • Limit trans fat and saturated fat
  • Three year administrative review cycle

Currently, the new guidelines do not affect meals for children with disabilities or children in pre-kindergarten.

The three year administrative review cycle will start during the 2013-2014 school year.

The new changes and guidelines are extensive. But documents like the “Questions & Answers on the Final Rule” help to simplify. 

Here is a list of some helpful resources from the USDA, be sure to find all of them here:

Also, don’t forget to check out our blog from Tuesday March 19 about schools serving three meals per day.