Doctors name healthiest school lunch programs; Los Angeles tops the list

Oct. 19—In recognition of National School Lunch Week, the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine has named its 2011 Golden Carrot Awards for innovation in school foodservice. Los Angeles Unified School District received the grand price and its $3,000 award.

LAUSD, led by Dennis Barrett, food services director, and David Binkle, deputy director, was given the award for its new menu, which was created to fulfill the proposed guidelines of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act. The district also was honored for its “I’m In” campaign, which links healthy eating to other school aspects, such as graduation.

Other winners were: Gianna Casetta, founder of SOAR, a Denver charter school for offering a diverse range of vegetarian menu options; and Rose Jones and Jennifer Sharp, R.D., foodservice professionals with Greenville County Schools in South Carolina for their redesigned lunch menus and culinary training.

The Golden Carrot Awards were created in 2004 to recognize programs that encourage students to eat fresh fruits and vegetables and that offer vegetarian, low-fat, whole-grain and nondairy options.

Read more about the program here.