On a couple of occasions, I’ve heard FSD Publisher Bill Anderson recount the time he saw a fast-casual chain operator thank a group of college chefs for the work they do.
And it wasn’t on behalf of a friend or relative on a campus meal plan.
College dining had indirectly helped his business, that operator said, by introducing his customers to the sorts of global cuisine they would later encounter on his restaurants’ menus. Without having the chance to explore new foods when they were younger, those diners might have avoided his concept altogether, instead choosing the ones they knew as tried and true.
In their own way, K-12 operators are making a similar handoff, preparing young diners’ palates and minds for the food choices they’ll make throughout their lifetime.
That’s a big job. And one that comes with its fair share of pressures and pain points.
Yet you all rise to that challenge each and every day. From teaching students how to feed themselves to help them feel their best to the farm-to-school initiatives and other improvements you’re seeking through grants, your school nutrition teams are in a state of perpetual motion.
When we surveyed K-12 readers for our January cover story, we never expected to hear from as many of you as we did. But the responses just kept pouring in, full of passion, innovation and—in a great many cases—frustration. Keeping students fed can be rewarding work, but it’s not without its challenges.
In this issue, our very first dedicated solely to the K-12 segment, I hope we did justice to your slice of the noncommercial industry. And I hope you’ll send in some more of that honest feedback and let us know whether we hit the mark.
What else do you wish we knew about school feeding? Let me know at firstname.lastname@example.org.