January 9, 2012 by Alex Hoekstra
It’s the first day of my last semester as an undergraduate. Coming back to school makes me realize just how much I rely on the university-provided food. I’m lucky that MSU has what must be an incredibly well-funded food services program, and offers an amazing assortment of food – some less than healthy, but some truly nutritious. There’s always something real to eat, no matter where you go. That’s a pretty far departure from what I remember of grade school cafeterias. It’s been a while since setting foot in a high school lunchroom, but I can’t say I have fond memories of the options available. Since leaving for college, I’ve heard nothing but bad news about the state of school lunches over the years.
I’m a fan of real food. I try to eat minimally-processed, whole and raw foods whenever possible. It’s unfortunately difficult sometimes – not because real food isn’t as tasty as processed “food” (it most certainly can be), but because there’s just so little of it out there in a sea of processed, refined and packaged edibles (available in high abundance, at low cost and tasty flavor). You really don’t need to look very far to see where processed food has taken us, and unless something changes, I’m not optimistic about the future of our society’s health.
Today, I found a project that’s looking to take a big step in the right direction, and starting where it might matter most: in schools. Salad Factory wants to take over the lunch menus of schools in their community to offer wholesome, healthy and sustainable food to students.
The Salad Factory has a goal of $35,000, and 45 days to go (Feb 24). I’m going to be pulling for them, and encourage you to help me spread the word on this one. Think of the children.