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By Donald Lambro
Growth spikes are little more than trend-free anomalies
Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Topic - Barry Sackin
More than 500 schools have dropped out of the federal school lunch program since new guidelines went into effect 12 months ago, a sign of still-smoldering discontent with the ambitious rewrite of what the nation's schoolchildren find on their lunch trays.
If the federal government gets its way, critics are warning, school lunches will be more expensive and less appetizing and ultimately will leave school districts footing the bill for costly food going down the garbage disposal.
"For the people who have to plan menus, it's been complicated," said Barry Sackin, owner of B. Sackin and Associates, a California-based consulting firm specializing in the school food-service industry. "Getting whole-grain bread items, finding them at a good price range has been challenging. Because the menus are so restrictive in terms of their structure, it decreases flexibility and there are still reports of significant waste, particularly with fruits and vegetables."
"Unfortunately, there is a perception that if we fix school meals we can fix childhood obesity. But the reality is that school meals are already the healthiest meals that many children eat," he told lawmakers. "The fact that too many children start school already overweight certainly suggests that schools aren't the cause."