New York’s public school system goes meatless on Fridays

NEW YORK, Feb 4 (Reuters) – Bring on the broccoli.

New York public schools have started serving vegan meals once a week on Fridays, part of an initiative by the city’s Department of Education to introduce healthier food choices.

The menu items on the first day of the new food plan included vegan tacos, seasoned broccoli and black bean and corn salad.

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Cheese sandwiches and milk will also be available, but otherwise Friday menus will be entirely vegan in New York’s public school system – the largest in the United States, serving 1.1 million students in more than 1 800 schools.

“Plant-based options in schools mean healthy eating and healthy living,” the city’s Department of Education said in a tweet.

“It’s really a big shift from where they were with high dairy foods like grilled cheese and pizza to more sustainable and healthier things for our students,” said Dana Smith, campaign manager for Meatless. Monday.

Since 2019/20, schools in the city have offered vegetarian meals on Mondays.

New York City Mayor Eric Adams is a vegan and has touted the health and environmental benefits of a plant-based diet.

“With one voice we talk about fighting childhood obesity, diabetes, but you walk into a school building every day and you see the food that’s fueling our health care crisis,” Adams said earlier. during the week.

“And the kids called me and said they want better food at school. I’m going to do my best to give them options for healthier eating,” he said. .

Dr. Vanita Rahman, clinical director at Barnard Medical Center, welcomed the new initiative.

“I think it’s a very good first step to bring this to school because children are vulnerable,” she said. “They eat what they are given, whether at home or at school. They may not always have control over food. So New York City public schools offering this are a great first step.”

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Reporting by Christine Kiernan and Soren Larsen; edited by Diane Craft

Our standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.

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