New meal regs greatly affect school menus

Study shows how the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act has affected child nutrition programs.

Published in FSD K-12 Spotlight

The Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act greatly impacted what the majority of operators offer at lunch, according to new research from Datassential. Other challenging areas include menu rotation and reimbursements. 

Operators report that meeting requirements for items offered at lunch to be a bigger challenge in 2013 than in 2012. Lunch program reimbursements nearly doubled in impact between 2012 and 2013, jumping from 27% to 54%.

How operators say the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act has impacted them:

  Impacted 2013 Impacted 2012 Greatest Challenges 2013 Greatest Challenges 2012
Lunch foods offered 81% 74% 39% 24%
Frequency of items on menu rotation 63% 50% 14% 10%
Lunch program reimbursements 54% 27% 13% 5%
Breakfast foods offered 42% 45% 3% 3%
More items prepared from scratch/partial scratch 35% 48% 10% 15%
Nutritional information available to students and parents 31% 39% 5% 9%
Purchasing locally sourced foods 24% 38% 5% 8%
More items purchased prepared 21% 21% 4% 2%
Program qualification rates 20% 15% 2% 1%
Food handling requirements/food safety requirements 16% 16% 0% 1%
Items available in the vending machines 15% 25% 2% 3%
Student access to vending machines 9% 17% 1% 1%

Source: Datassential

More From FoodService Director

Menu Development

At University of North Dakota, National Nutrition Month in March sometimes elicits as much excitement as the NCAA basketball tournament or spring break. That’s when the school’s version of the TV show “Chopped” takes place. The competition is an event organized by UND Dining’s registered dietitian, Dustin Frize, in partnership with the college’s chefs. Students are organized into teams, given a basket of nutritious foods and tasked with creating winning dishes. “Healthfulness is a key component of the judging,” Frize says.

And this unique partnership is gaining traction nationwide...

Industry News & Opinion

The dining team at Hofstra University in Hempstead, N.Y., has updated the halal offerings at its student center after student concerns of cross-contamination and mislabeling, The Hofstra Chronicle reports.

After listening to students, the center’s halal options were moved from a self-serve line to a hot entree station. The dining team also updated its signage to better indicate which meals are halal.

In addition to halal hot dogs and hamburgers, students will now have the option of halal beef as well as new globally inspired halal meals.

Read the full story via...

Industry News & Opinion

Ball State University in Muncie, Ind., has debuted a mini food truck on campus, The Daily News reports.

Dining staff say the truck was introduced to give students more dining options as well as reaffirm the school’s commitment to sustainability.

The truck will feature healthy options with fewer than 550 calories that will be sold in plant-based to-go containers . Students will be able to choose from two to three rotating entrees as well as two signature entrees that will be available the entire week.

Read the full story via .

Sponsored Content

From Mondelez.

With consumers living increasingly busy, on-the-go lifestyles, operators who offer grab-and-go items are in the best position to benefit from the snacking public's eating habits. But since most people turn to different snacks throughout the day, operators need to provide diverse options to capture consumers' changing appetites. The ongoing popularity of grab-and-go items reveals trends that could help operators tailor their inventories to increase sales, especially in the workplace.

What do snackers want?

According to The Hartman Group's 2017 Out of Home...

FSD Resources