School meals to feature less salt this year

Moore County schools works to reduce salt without sacrificing taste.

SOUTHERN PINES, S.C.—The debate between “good tasting” and “good for you” will be in full swing this fall in Moore County school cafeterias.

Those who plan and prepare school meals are dealing with new guidelines this year that limit the amount of salt in meals, which means a challenge when it comes to making school lunches kids will actually eat.

Moore County Child Nutrition Director Amanda Cagle said the federally mandated regulation to lower the sodium content of school meals by 10 percent, creates a challenge when school cafeterias must compete against the high fat and sodium-laced fast foods that many students prefer.

"Adjusting sodium levels in school foods has been underway for about 10 years as the federal government has gradually lowered the amount," Cagle said. "The federal regulations to lower sodium levels by another 10 percent took effect July 1, 2014, but we were proactive and began implementation during the last school year.“

Congress passed the Healthy Meals for Healthy Americans Act in 1994, in which new regulations issued an update of nutrition standards for school meals to make them consistent with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

More From FoodService Director

Industry News & Opinion

Amherst-Pelham Regional School District in Amherst, Mass., is updating its lunch debt policy to no longer single out students, MassLive reports.

Under the new policy, students with lunch debt will be given the same meals as their peers, regardless of how much they owe. School officials will also be communicating directly with parents of students who have accumulated debt instead of through the students themselves.

The updated policy comes just before U.S. school districts will be required to publicly list their lunch debt policies, per new USDA requirements starting July 1...

Menu Development
eureka

Since California’s state motto is “Eureka!” it seems fitting that a recent conversation with the director of hospitality at San Diego’s Palomar Health led to the biggest aha moment I’ve had in a long time.

I called Jim Metzger in late April with the purpose of discussing Palomar’s recent commitment to the goal of making 60% of its total menu plant-based by this summer. It seemed a lofty number, and I was curious how the public health system planned to get there.

But my personal eureka didn’t come while we were talking about how Palomar had cleaned up the impulse-buy zones...

Industry News & Opinion

Labeling foods with indulgent buzzwords such as “sweet sizzlin’” and “crispy” can lead consumers to make healthier food choices , according to a recent study out of Stanford University .

In the fall 2016 study, researchers labeled vegetables in one of the school’s dining halls using terms from four categories: basic, healthy restrictive, healthy positive or indulgent.

The green beans, for example, were listed as “green beans” for basic, “light ‘n’ low-carb green beans and shallots” for healthy restrictive, “healthy energy boosting green beans and shallots” for healthy...

Ideas and Innovation
sparkling water

Our carbonated soft drink sales at Earls.67 reflect a national trend; we’re continually down on carbonated soft drink sales by 8% to 9% on an annual basis,” says Cameron Bogue, beverage director at the contemporary-casual chain Earls Kitchen + Bar.

The issue with spa water

Many operators are intrigued with the offering, but they are learning that infused water can’t be offered at a cost to guests unless there is added value beyond cut-up fruit. Bogue says, “I was adamant that I didn’t want to charge for spa water.”

Agua fresca alternatives

At the original location of

...

FSD Resources