Tag Archives: Jamie Oliver

LA School District Bans Flavored Milk

chocolate-milk

Jamie Oliver has set forth a new generation of revamping school lunches. As seen in the first season of his popular TV show, “Food Revolution”, Oliver first modified school lunches in Huntington, West Virginia. This community was deemed by the CDC as one of the top unhealthiest cities in America, with high rates of obesity, diabetes, and coronary heart disease. The main concept of this revolution was to get rid of sodium-packed processed foods, and bring in fresh foods made on site with loads of fruits and vegetables.

This year Jamie Oliver focused his attention on the Los Angeles School District. Below is an article from Los Angeles Times revealing their latest triumph.

L.A. Unified removes flavored milk from menus

The Los Angeles school district becomes by far the largest in the country to do so, as part of its effort to make school food healthier and help combat childhood obesity.

The Los Angeles Unified School District on Tuesday, with a 5-2 vote on a new dairy contract, became by far the largest district in the country to remove flavored milk from its menus, part of its effort to make school food healthier and help combat childhood obesity.

The milk issue has overshadowed other changes in the district’s food services division, which serves 650,000 meals a day at 1,000 sites. A menu overhaul is underway that will mean fewer meals that resemble fast food and more vegetarian offerings. Spinach tortellini in butternut squash sauce and California sushi rolls, along with many ethnic foods, are to be added. Corn dogs, chicken nuggets and other breaded items are out, said Dennis Barrett, food services director.

“Absolutely, by the fall the district will be a national leader,” said Matthew Sharp, senior advocate with the California Food Policy Advocates, who has long worked on school food reform.

The Board of Education does not generally vote on individual menu items, but it weighed in on flavored milk because it must approve large contracts. The board approved a five-year, $100-million dairy contract Tuesday that excludes chocolate and strawberry milk. It includes low-fat and nonfat plain milk as well as soy and Lactaid milks.

L.A. Unified, the nation’s second-largest district behind New York City, has been in the forefront among large urban districts in the effort to improve cafeteria food. The district banned sodas on campuses in 2004, starting a trend followed by the state and districts across the country. Later that year, the school board passed a motion to ban the sale of junk food during the school day by restricting the calories and fat content in snack foods. It also endorsed farm-to-school programs and called for more produce to be served.

And in 2005, the board approved the Cafeteria Improvement Motion, which required that foods have less salt, banned added trans-fats and limited saturated fats.

Not every initiative has panned out. A call for salad bars at all schools “where facilities permit” has left many campuses without them. And some school food activists and others say the cafeterias still have a long way to go.

Among his first acts as superintendent in April, John Deasy appeared on Jimmy Kimmel’s TV talk show with celebrity chef Jamie Oliver to say he would propose eliminating flavored milk.

Responding to Tuesday’s decision, Oliver said, “This is a giant step forward for the health and future of 680,000 kids in Los Angeles, and leads the way for more school districts around the country to follow.” Oliver set his recent “Food Revolution” reality TV series in Los Angeles, and, among other things, loaded a school bus with sand to demonstrate students’ sugar consumption.

Parents and others have also lobbied against chocolate and strawberry milk, saying flavored milk contains unnecessary added sugar in a county where about one in three kids is overweight or obese.

Board member Tamar Galatzan, who voted against the plain-milk contract, suggested that the district was letting “a TV chef who’s trying to get publicity” dictate the decision.

“I think we are demonizing milk,” Galatzan said. The juice the district serves at breakfast has more sugar than flavored milk, she said.

Board member Yolie Flores, who voted in favor of the contract, said students tell her that food is their No. 1 issue at school, and she wondered how it can be appealing and healthy when the district has “77 pathetic cents” to spend on food per meal.

A cup of fat-free chocolate milk served in L.A. Unified has 120 calories, with 20 grams (80 calories) of sugar. Strawberry fat-free milk has 130 calories, with 26 grams of sugar. White, plain nonfat milk has 90 calories, with 12 grams of sugar. (Milk contains some natural sugar in the form of lactose.) For comparison, a cup of Coke has 26 grams of sugar.

Emily Ventura, a research fellow at USC’s Childhood Obesity Research Center, said a child who chooses a school breakfast of sweetened cereal, chocolate milk, coffee cake and juice would eat 51 grams, or 204 calories, of added sugar.

Some flavored-milk advocates say students won’t drink milk at all if chocolate or strawberry isn’t offered. Julie Buric, vice president of marketing for the Milk Processors Education Program, cited an industry-funded study that shows milk consumption can drop 35% when flavored milk disappears. And in January the dairy industry held a seminar for California cafeteria workers called “Keep Flavored Milk From Dropping Out of School.”

About 60% of the milk taken by students is flavored, and some officials as well as the dairy industry say plain-milk-only policies could keep kids from the lunch lines altogether. Students are required to take three of the four items offered for breakfast and four of the five at lunch in order for school districts to receive reimbursements from the federal School Lunch Program and breakfast program.

The district needs to attract students to the cafeteria with an effective campaign that will introduce students to the new menu items and explain why flavored milk has disappeared, said Sharp of California Food Policy Advocates.

Megan Bomba, a project coordinator with Occidental College’s Urban and Environmental Policy Institute, agreed, saying “the meal needs to be better, not [that] we need to keep chocolate milk” to attract students to the cafeteria, she said.

The menu proposed for fall sounds more appealing and sophisticated, she added.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture, which runs school food programs and promotes the dairy industry, allows flavored milk in reimbursable school meals. New York City schools serve chocolate milk. Berkeley, Compton and San Diego as well as Boulder, Colo., Minneapolis and Washington, D.C., have eliminated flavored milk with at least some meals.

(Los Angeles Times – June 15 2011)

LA Says No To Jaime Oliver

L.A. school district doesn’t bite at “Food Revolution” chef’s offer

English chef Jamie Oliver is bringing his reality show to L.A. but the district says it will keep working with its own nutrition experts and advocates to make school meals more healthful. Continue reading

Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution: A Nutrition Reality Show

Jamie Oliver | Foodfacts.com

Jamie Oliver | Foodfacts.com

Will ABC keep it? We hope so.

Foodfacts.com applauds any effort to promote a better understanding of nutrition, food ingredients, health and well-being. Jamie Oliver has raised public awareness about these issues, while presenting nutrition and health topics in an entertaining way.

The Foodfacts.com Blog is wondering if Jamie’s new reality show will resonate with the public? With obesity now our number one public health concern in the United States, we certainly hope so. Continue reading

Brit Chef Jamie Oliver Hopes To Cook Up A Food Revolution

Jamie Oliver | Foodfacts.com

Jamie Oliver | Foodfacts.com

Jamie Oliver may be known to most Americans as a TV chef but he’s been concentrating more of his efforts on healthy eating programs. He started a campaign to scrap processed food in favor of fresh ingredients in the UK and brought the fight to America with the upcoming premiere of “Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution.”

Oliver started the campaign in 2004 to get schools in the UK to dump processed food which culminated in a TV series and a movement called “Feed Me Better.” The government caved under public pressure and banned junk food from schools and invested $400 million to help students get better meals. Continue reading

Jamie Oliver’s TED Talk: How We’re Killing Our Kids With Bad Food

Jamie Oliver | Foodfacts.com

Jamie Oliver | Foodfacts.com

“I wish for everyone to help create a strong, sustainable movement to educate every child about food, inspire families to cook again and empower people everywhere to fight obesity.” -Jamie Oliver

For his contributions to better eating at school, his social enterprise restaurant Fifteen and his vision to change the way kids eat at home and at school, TED has awarded Jamie Oliver their 2010 prize.

“We’ve got to start teaching our kids about food in schools. Period.”

Foodfacts.com finds it admirable that someone on a food and nutrition mission could win such a high-profile media-intensive award. Please take a few minutes and listen to Jamie’s TED talk about kids’ health, school lunches, how you as a parent (or teacher, auntie or uncle) can take concrete actions to help your kids make better nutritional choices.

This is a powerful wake-up call for all of us. Not just kids.

Get involved by seeing what food is being served to your kids at school. Talk to the lunch ladies, the principal, the PTA and the school board and tell them you want quality, fresh, healthy food served at school.

It’s proven that real food promotes more effective learning. If you want better health for your kids the junk food must leave the school. And yes, that means chocolate milk too!

Source: Debaird.net