If you have been paying attention to the news this week, you may have noticed stories running with regards to “pink slime” being served in school lunches. This “slime” consists of beef by-products: cow intestines, connective tissue and other parts that are not used in traditional beef cuts. Although I read these news stories with distant disgust, it didn’t really hit home until I saw something that looked a lot lot this pink slime being served in the cafeteria of my local elementary school this week.
This is the same pink slime that repulsed the public when it was learned that fast food giants like McDonalds and Burger King were using it. Although these fast food giants have stopped serving the pink slime as a result of the public outcry, the federal government continues to allow its use in school food.
Let that settle in for a second…the fast food industry is more interested in the health of our children then the National School Lunch Program (USDA)?
If the thought of serving our Nation’s children pink slime infuriates you as much as me, then I suggest you join me in asking the USDA to reconsider their reported plan to purchase an additional 7 million pounds of pink slime for use by our public schools.
Although the pink slime did appear in a school lunch locally in the form of a hamburger, I am very proud to report that many of the children in our local school did not choose this option for lunch. In fact, I witnessed a handful of 5th graders choose the hamburger, look closely at it and throw it out (I said nothing..I swear). But, at our school, these 5th graders have an alternative to pink slime on a bun – last year we were the lucky recipients of a super shiny, kid-sized, rocket ship looking salad bar as a result of the Let’s Move Salad Bars to School campaign.
Application for this grant is super easy – the PTO was able to do most of the work for the school. Although the PTO has had to donate time to make in making sure the salad bar line moves smoothly, it is worth every bit of our time because the salad bar continues to receive rave reviews from the harshest critics – our kids.
If you are concerned about providing your children with healthy food alternatives, first sign the petition to eliminate the pink slime option from our nations schools, then, check out the Lets Move-Salad Bars to School webpage and sign up to have your school considered.
So please, stop for a second and listen to these 5th graders – they want and deserve better!