District hopes new program will teach healthy eating habits

FoodService Director - news - Build Your Plate - Whitsons - New Britain School DistrictDec. 15—Smith Elementary School in the New Britain School District in Connecticut has launched Build Your Plate, a program to familiarize students with healthy foods, with the hope that those eating habits continue as the students age. The students are taught how to prepare a balanced meal, the source of the ingredients in the meal and the nutritional content of the meal.

Build Your Plate is divided into four modules: entrée, side dish, beverage or snack, and dessert. In each 30-minute module, the students learn about that week’s plate, see the ingredients for the dish in their raw state and learn about the ingredients’ regions.

Build Your Plate began as a pilot program in fifth-grade classes this September. It will expand to other grade levels and elementary schools next year. The program was developed by Jeff Taddeo and Michael Koch, food service directors with Whitsons School Nutrition.

More From FoodService Director

Menu Development
muse school produce

Kayla Webb, executive chef at Muse School, has transitioned the private K-12 day school in Calabasas, Calif., to an entirely vegan menu over a three-year period. Webb talks about her menuing, and how the school’s kitchen earned the title of “greenest restaurant in the world” from the Green Restaurant Association.

Q: How did you help parents get used to the idea of an all plant-based diet?

A: The first year, we didn’t announce it. We were just serving one plant-based meal a week, so it wasn’t that drastic. We do monthly Muse Talks where we invite different speakers to our school to...

Ideas and Innovation
lettuce dirt

Savor at McCormick Place developed the Green Thumb brand for menu items and products featuring its rooftop bounty; the latest is a pale ale made with the first crop of hops grown on the roof. Promoting that branding and the convention center’s green certification has brought in business from groups with a sustainability focus.

Ideas and Innovation
business pamphlet fair show

As we struggle to recruit and retain millennials, we had our current millennial employees invite friends who don’t work for our organization to a Q&A session where we find out why our organization is or isn’t appealing to them, and what they are looking for in an employer. I recommend doing this off-site in a casual environment so you can get honest and open feedback that could be useful for better marketing.

Menu Development
pho bowl

Achieving authenticity can be tricky. Late last year, Oberlin College landed in the news when students protested the way dining services at the Ohio school was botching ethnic food, serving up inauthentic versions of Asian and Middle Eastern dishes. It’s a challenge other operators are confronting, too, often tapping staff and patrons for inspiration.

At 260-bed Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta Scottish Rite, Executive Chef Bradley Czajka, himself of Polish-Ukrainian descent, started Global Stations as a way to recognize the diversity of cultures at the hospital. “We have such an...

FSD Resources