Bigger produce helpings on the menu for school foodservice

With new meal pattern, the amount of required fruits and vegetables has grown.

Feb. 16—One in three kids nationwide is considered overweight and La Crosse county in Wisconsin is no exception.

First lady Michelle Obama recently announced new standards for school meals across the nation, but some of the changes are already happening in the La Crosse School District.

Schools across the nation are supposed to gradually implement the first lady's new standards over the next five years. The La Crosse School district actually already started making some changes to its meal options this past September.

With the school year half over, school officials are now working to make sure next year's menu will be even better. For the 2012-2013 school-year, the new standards require students to get bigger serving portions of those fruits and vegetables, and all grains on the menu will only be whole grains.

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Students at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor will be served student-grown produce from the campus farm at dining halls this fall, M Live reports.

The dining team received its first batch of produce from UM’s on-campus farm in June, after students received the proper USDA certification to grow, harvest and deliver food to campus dining halls. In order to figure out what produce is needed, students communicate with the dining department weekly, and Michigan Dining purchases items accordingly.

"The students are involved from seed to plate," Executive Chef Frank Turchan...

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