Tennessee 6 year old meat

A lunch room worker at Joseph Rogers Primary School in Tennessee took this photo of a pork roast that was kept in the freezer, with the label on the packaging dating it to 2009. (WATE-TV)

An East Tennessee school district served years-old pork to students for lunch and is now implementing new food-handling procedures.

Local media outlets report that the frozen meat had dates of 2009 to 2011 and was served to students in the Hawkins County district on April 22. No sicknesses have been reported.

Director of Schools Steve Starnes says a new inventory system went into effect last Friday. All current frozen items were inventoried, and outdated items were discarded.

"We want parents to feel safe in knowing that when they send their children to school here, that we are providing them a quality food service program," Starnes told NBC local affiliate WCYB.

Hawkins County Commissioner Michael Herrell says he received a call from a concerned cafeteria worker about the old pork, and he raised questions about the food's safety.

"They go to school and that might be the only meal they get all day long, and it just upsets me that these kids are going to school to get that meal," Herrell told CNN local affiliate WATE.

Herrell said a cook at Cherokee High School told him the meat was bad, but was told by his manager to serve the roast with gravy to make it taste better.

According to the Kingsport Times-News, the Department of Agriculture quality chart recommends eating frozen roasts within 12 months, but it says frozen food remains safe indefinitely.

With files from CBC News