Rethinking school lunches
Friday, October 23, 2009 | 09:37 AM ET
By Kevin Yarr, CBCNews.ca
In a move towards teaching healthy eating habits, deep fryers are coming out of schools on P.E.I., but surely we could go a step further than this.
When my daughter brings home her weekly food order, there are few surprises on the menu: potato wedges, chicken strips, pizza. There is no roast pork with apples, ratatouille, zucchini flan. Apart from ice cream on Fridays, there is no dessert on the menu at all: no chocolate mousse or even a fruit compote.
What planet am I on, you may be wondering. I'm not on a different planet at all, but I am in a different country: France.
It is no secret that the French care about food, but this is not something that is encoded in their genetics. It is taught. And one of the ways it is taught is in the schools, where it is not unusual for kids to sit down to a proper meal at lunchtime with their teacher. They are not only learning about different foods, but about table etiquette and the value of sitting down to a meal with friends.
This is a stark contrast to my daughter's experience. She gets a few minutes to cram back pizza or a sandwich from home before being rushed out to the playground.
Not that playground time is a bad thing, but the meal becomes a very practical event in this scenario. Fuel up and get outside!
In some cases, the French menu is too expensive to be practical; there just aren't sufficient kitchen facilities. But in others, it actually wouldn't be any more expensive to serve up a decent meal, and stop catering to what we believe the children want, and pushing them out the door.
What would you like to see your kids eating at school at lunchtime?
This discussion is now Open. Submit your Comment.
Post a Comment
About the blog
From trends and culture to politics and nutrition, Food Bytes serves up tasty tidbits about food and the issues surrounding it that flavour our everyday lives.
About the writers
Amber Hildebrandt writes for CBCNews.ca in Toronto. Growing up on a farm in Manitoba, she acquired an insatiable appetite, but it was during a stint in Japan that she developed her discerning tastebuds and "foodie" ways.
Andrea Chiu is an associate producer at CBC Radio Digital. Though she loves to eat, cook and discuss food, don't ask her to bake. It never turns out well. She tweets as @TOfoodie on Twitter and organizes food and wine events in Toronto called FoodieMeet.
Tara Kimura is the consumer life reporter for CBCNews.ca, covering a wide range of issues that range from rising food costs and the growing organic movement, to new trends in the marketplace.
Andree Lau is a CBC web reporter in Calgary. Her journalism career includes seven years as a CBC-TV reporter. Her own blog called "are you gonna eat that?" chronicles her eating adventures (including sampling snake and camel hoof tendon).
Jessica Wong is a CBCNews.ca writer who loves to eat and cook, as well as discuss, read and watch programming about food, sometimes all at once.
Kevin Yarr, CBCNews.ca's writer in Prince Edward Island, wrote about food and beer for national and regional magazines before joining the CBC. He acquired a desire for new tastes on his first trip to Europe, and an appreciation of eating locally and in season when he finally settled down on P.E.I.
Elizabeth Bridge is a writer with the CBC Digital Archives in Toronto. She first ventured into the kitchen as a child to indulge a sweet tooth by baking cookies and making fudge. A student budget compelled her to be a vegetarian (for a while) and instilled in her an ongoing curiosity about food and cooking.
- Chinese restaurant awards
- Wednesday, November 11, 2009
- Chocolate in the schools
- Tuesday, November 10, 2009
- Food Friday roundup
- Friday, November 6, 2009
- A pasta by any other name
- Friday, October 30, 2009
- A friendship is started
- Monday, October 26, 2009
- Subscribe to Food Bytes
- November 2009 (3)
- October 2009 (7)
- September 2009 (4)
- August 2009 (7)
- July 2009 (7)
- June 2009 (8)
- May 2009 (13)
- April 2009 (12)
- March 2009 (10)
- February 2009 (9)
- January 2009 (9)
- December 2008 (16)
- November 2008 (13)
- October 2008 (12)
- September 2008 (11)
- August 2008 (9)
- July 2008 (12)
- June 2008 (10)
- May 2008 (16)