Remember when school lunch was made up of frozen burgers and pizza squares — and ketchup counted as eating a vegetable?
School Districts in Colorado, including Boulder Valley, are starting to buy local ingredients as part of an effort to make school lunches healthier for kids and kinder on the environment.
In Durango, the local school district, 9-R, just announced plans to buy 5,500 pounds of local beef for the 2009-10 school year.
The school district will spend about $11,550 on locally raised beef this year. The effort began in spring 2008, when 9-R purchased 600 pounds of beef from Fox Fire Farms.
“It was hugely successful, and then we were able to continue that relationship,” said Krista Garand, 9-R director of student nutrition.
The ground beef is used to make tacos, barbecued-beef sandwiches, chili, nachos and other dishes. District 9-R also serves locally grown fruits and vegetables.
“Sometimes kids are eating better at schools than they are at home,” Garand said. “We’re serving organic meals to kids.”