school food

#Thanks4RealMichelleObama

by Bettina Elias Siegel on November 24, 2014

You may have already heard about a new Twitter hashtag that’s making national news: disgruntled kids are taking photos of their unappetizing school lunches and sharing them on Twitter with a sarcastic #thanksmichelleobama.  A recent Buzz Feed post about the trend has already received an astonishing two million views. Some of the photos shared by students are indeed stomach-turning. […]

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What the Midterm Elections Mean for School Food

by Bettina Elias Siegel on November 6, 2014

Whether you voted red, blue or purple in this week’s midterm elections, you and your viewpoints are always welcome on The Lunch Tray. But there are times when political partisanship directly impacts the kid-and-food issues I cover and, unfortunately, that’s the case for school food reform.  As the New York Times reported in a recent Sunday Magazine […]

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Imagine a restaurant getting a great review, only to have the chef call the newspaper to complain that the critic was sorely mistaken and the restaurant’s food isn’t as good as the review made it out to be. That bizarre scenario was all I could think of when I received an email yesterday from the School […]

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Politico Spotlights the Power of Consumer Food Petitions

by Bettina Elias Siegel on July 19, 2014

Just FYI, this weekend’s lead story on Politico, “Food Fight: Consumers Revolt Online,” discusses the ever-growing impact of online petitions in changing our food supply. The story features my successful Change.org petition in 2012 regarding the use of lean, finely textured beef (aka “pink slime”) in school food, and goes on to discuss subsequent petition campaigns on […]

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My Houston Chronicle Op-Ed re: Saving School Lunch

by Bettina Elias Siegel on July 13, 2014

For those interested, I have an editorial in today’s (Sunday) Houston Chronicle regarding the current school food controversy. In it, I discuss how Texas (yes, Texas!) has been a leader in school nutrition, and how our congressional delegation should carry on that  proud tradition by rejecting language in the pending appropriations bill that would allow districts to opt out of improved […]

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With all that’s going on in the kid-and-food world these days, I’m getting sucked back into my old five-day-a-week posting schedule against my will!    Here’s the latest: SNA Asks For A Sit-Down with FLOTUS The School Nutrition Association (SNA) has asked for a meeting with First Lady Michelle Obama and the U.S. Department of […]

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Do House Republicans Now Regret Picking a School Food Fight?

by Bettina Elias Siegel on June 19, 2014

Maybe so. In a piece published on SF Gate earlier this week, Carolyn Lochhead reports that repeated delays in the House on the school food waiver vote indicate to Democrats that: Republicans have concluded they’re on the losing side of the school lunch fight, which has touched off a firestorm in Washington and schools across the country. […]

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A School Food News Round-Up

by Bettina Elias Siegel on June 17, 2014

The House of Representatives won’t take up the controversial school food waiver issue until next week, but there’s still news to share regarding the fight over healthier school meals: Former USDA Child Nutrition Director Resigns in Protest from School Nutrition Association The Hagstrom Report (subscription only) reports that Stan Garnett, former director of child nutrition at […]

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Several weeks ago, 19 past presidents of the School Nutrition Association (SNA) made news by sending an open letter urging Congress to stay the course on healthier school meals. In doing so, these individuals publicly broke rank with their own organization, which is currently urging Congress to include in the 2015 appropriations bill language which would allow struggling school districts to opt out of […]

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An Update on (What Else?) the School Lunch Fight

by Bettina Elias Siegel on June 12, 2014

Yesterday, the School Nutrition Association (SNA) held a conference call to defend its support of a legislative amendment which would allow struggling school districts to opt out of healthier school meal standards.  Such waivers would be for only one year but the amendment, if passed, is widely seen as a first step in chipping away permanently at the nutritional advances of the […]

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