Montgomery parents want ‘real food’ in school cafeterias

March 12, 2013

A new parent group in Montgomery County is lobbying for healthier food in school cafeterias.

Real Food for Kids Montgomerywants to work with Montgomery County Public Schools to eliminate artificial additives, refined white flour, added sugar and processed foods from cafeteria meals. They want foods like colored slushies and flavored milk, which in some cases have either added dyes or added sugar, out of school cafeterias.

The grassroots parent group is partnering with Real Food for Kids, which started in Fairfax County more than two years ago. Since the Virginia group started, Fairfax County Public Schools has removed several foods with dyes, preservatives and other artificial additives from its cafeteria foods.

School nutrition has received increased attention in recent years because of first lady Michelle Obama’s “Let’s Move!” campaign to reduce childhood obesity, and new USDA standards to make lunches healthier.

Real Food for Kids Montgomery this week is holding its inaugural event, a screening of “Cafeteria Man.” The film is a documentary about the former food services director of Baltimore City public schools.

The movie screening is at 7:30 p.m. Friday at the Takoma Park Community Center, 7500 Maple Ave. The film’s director, Richard Chisolm, is scheduled to be at the event.

Lynh Bui is a Prince George's County public safety reporter and former Montgomery County education reporter.
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