My particular hotspot for the federal school lunch program and the sheer inertia of action to fix it is usually pretty precise, but imagine instead a kinder, gentler question: what would the guy in charge of feeding the President Of The United States say about school lunches?
Well, anticipate no more: Obama’s New Chef Skewers School Lunches.
In May, over a meal of locally-produced beef and barley soup, Mr. Kass lamented the sorry state of the National School Lunch Program, which provides low-cost or free lunches to schoolchildren. He noted that what gets served up to kids is influenced by government agricultural subsidies. As a result, he says, meals served to students are low in vegetables and disproportionately high in fat, additives, preservatives and high-fructose corn syrup.
As Kass rightly points out, there is an entire other side to school lunches besides poor nutrition: they bolster a wide range of useless agricultural subsidies:
The government subsidizes various agricultural industries, creating overproduction in commodities such as beef, pork and dairy. This overproduction depresses prices, endangering the vitality of producers. The U.S. government purchases the overproduction it has stimulated and then disposes of the excess by giving it to schools.
It’s an instructive talk and well worth a read — especially if you eat at your desk. Oh, and no food posting would be complete without an admonition to read Michael Pollan.