Making a Difference… Fruit & Vegetables Matter

Encouraging students to eat more fruits & vegetables. A healthy eating environment teaches children good nutrition and the elements of a proper diet, which can have positive effects on children’s eating habits and physical well being throughout life. USDA research indicates that children who participate in the National School Lunch Program have superior nutritional intakes compared to those who bring lunch from home or otherwise do not participate. An excellent way to boost the nutritive value, taste and eye appeal of school meals is to serve more fruits and vegetables in a variety of creative and appetizing ways. Opaa! would like to partner with our schools to offer multiple fruit and vegetable choices in an effort to increase student consumption of these nutrient rich foods.

Benefits of providing multiple fruit and vegetable choices include:

  • Students get the nutrients they need for success in the classroom
  • Fewer students may bring their lunch, so more kids eat school meals
  • Students can practice nutrition lessons learned in the classroom
  • Children build life skills in choosing what foods they will eat
  • Students eat more fruits and veggies because they pick what they like
  • Students get the nutrients they need because they eat foods they pick
  • More choices can be offered on the school menu
  • Less food is thrown away

Providing multiple choices of fruits and vegetables is easy using theoffer vs. serve option for your meal service.  If you are interested in learning more about implementing these options in your school, contact your Director of Nutrition Services.