School Lunch: A History Lesson in Politics

Congress is making a decision on School Lunch legislation today. On the table is a plan that would remove competitive junk foods and fast foods from schools, and increase funding a bit. However that funding comes from taking away SNAP (food stamp) funds.

From Jamie Oliver's School Food Revolution to my own battles over "Why Can't I Eat What My Friends Do?" now that the kiddo is in public school, there is a whole lot out there on school lunch.

But how did we get here? Did you know school gardens a la Alice Waters were NORMAL in the 1900s before National School Lunch legislation in 1946?

That as early as the 1800s in France, there was a better system for keeping free lunch recipients anonymous to prevent social stigma — something many school programs DO NOT do today?

How did processed food get into schools anyway? And what are the worst of the worst issues with those lunches?

Did you know the National School Lunch program originally fostered a kind of Jim Crow barrier to minority kids attending schools? Or, that even in 1946 the national program was DESIGNED to be an outlet for "agricultural surplus" commodities in order to prop up food prices and was not purely designed to feed healthy meals to kids who need them?

Hate to hijack the conversation here, but these are LONG posts. So, here are some links and part of the text from the most recent.

School Lunch: The Next Big Challenge
Dark Tales from the School Lunch Room
History of School Lunch Part 1
History of School Lunch: Politics on the Plate


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