As you know, one of the First Lady’s main programs is healthy food for the children. The theory goes, if they just ate healthier, childhood obesity, diabetes and heart problems would disappear. This is so important that the federal government recently updated its “dietary guidelines”. The Los Angeles school district tried that, and the results are stunning.
Participation in the school lunch program has declined dramatically. Here are some of the glowing reviews:
But Iraides Renteria and Mayra Gutierrez don’t even bother to line up. Iraides said the school food previously made her throw up, and Mayra calls it “nasty, rotty stuff.” So what do they eat? The juniors pull three bags of Flamin’ Hot Cheetos and soda from their backpacks.
Andre Jahchan, a 16-year-old sophomore at Esteban Torres High School, said…the chicken pozole was watery, the vegetable tamale was burned and hard, and noodles were soggy…’It’s nasty, nasty,’ …
Principals report massive waste, with unopened milk cartons and uneaten entrees being thrown away. Students are ditching lunch, and some say they’re suffering from headaches, stomach pains and even anemia. At many campuses, an underground market for chips, candy, fast-food burgers and other taboo fare is thriving. [emphasis supplied]
And, it’s expensive. Apparently, to comply with the new federal guidelines, nothing but fresh produce will do. The school district increased its spending on fruits and vegetables (fresh, of course) from $2 million in 2006 to $20 million in 2010. No wonder schools need more money…not for teachers or buildings, but for fresh green beans.
In response to this overwhelming enthusiasm, the school district has decided to change its menu. Hamburgers and pizza are back, replacing the likes of black bean burgers, and vegetarian curries and tamales, and lentil and brown rice cutlets.