Study: Students consume 400 billion calories from junk food sold in schools

Retired military officers say kids too overweight to join armed forced

Mission: Readiness is a nonprofit, non-partisan group of retired military officers who are concerned that the food we’re feeding to children is rendering them too sickly and too overweight to be assemble competitive, competent armed forces. “Still To Fat To Fight” is a follow-up to the 2010 report, “Too Fat To Fight,” which illustrates the fact that, in the last two years, things have not gotten better.

Here are just some of the findings in the report:

  • 1 in 4 American students is just too overweight to join the military
  • The Department of Defense spends over $1 billion of taxpayer money on “weight-related diseases” annually.
  • American students consume almost 400 billion calories from junk food sold in their schools alone each year. That doesn’t account for snacking at home, or food purchased at convenience stores.
  • Junk food calories served in schools to students equal more than the weight of an aircraft carrier.

More From FoodService Director

Menu Development
ranch dressing chicken fingers

While salad bars are often the first place K-12 operators look to incorporate more fresh produce, few go as far as making their own salad dressings. But last fall, in a continuing effort to transition from prepackaged meals to an all-scratch menu, Mark Augustine, executive chef of culinary and nutrition services for Minneapolis Public Schools, switched to concocting four varieties in-house—ranch, Caesar, Italian and Asian vinaigrette. The move, designed to eliminate artificial ingredients and lower fat and sodium, presented the biggest challenge when it came to ranch dressing, the school-...

Ideas and Innovation
phone bed call sick

We make people call and directly talk to their boss or supervisor if they are reporting an absence for a shift. While it is more cumbersome, it is a conscious decision. We have adapted and implemented electronic methods to obtain efficiencies in just about every other functional area, except for electronic absence reporting systems. The direct supervisor can put more pressure on an employee to show up—especially those with some form of the “Super Bowl plague”—than any electronic system can.

Ideas and Innovation
business card

We get the new folks abridged business cards saying, “Hi, my name is so-and-so and I work in nutrition department.” We thought it would give them more ownership of the program and elevate their status and position in the organization. It also gives our team more self-confidence and self-worth as an employee, which can be a challenge with foodservice workers.

Ideas and Innovation
tug hospital robot

Automation has opened up in recent years as foodservice operators across the country grapple with labor shortages. Robots deliver food trays to patients in hospitals, and they make sushi on college campuses. For some operators, they’re worthwhile to reduce strain on human employees and increase productivity.

Robots roamed the hallways when the University of California San Francisco Medical Center’s new Mission Bay campus opened last year. Though these robots have nicknames like Wall-E and Tuggie McFresh, they’re not a novelty. They’re a solution to a problem that administrators...

FSD Resources