By Ed Bruske
aka The Slow Cook
We recently published an item here noting that the School Nutrition Association, representing school food workers across the country, had designated Fairfax County just outside the nation's capitol as having the best food program in the country.
I have to admit, I did not have a high level of confidence when I printed news of the nutrition association's award. If the food in Fairfax schools was so great, wouldn't we have heard more about it before now?
Well, this just shows the perils of accepting press releases at face value. The Washington Post made the same mistake in a July 15 article by health columnist Valerie Strauss. The photograph used to illustrate Strauss' piece should have been a giveaway: it shows what appear to be high-schoolers eating chicken nuggets, sugary yogurt and chocolate milk.
Readers were quick to set Strauss straight. Here's a sampling of the many comments:
"This is so ridiculous I can't even believe it. The picture used for this article has a group of kids eating pizza, chicken nuggets and drinking chocolate milk. I was in the Fairfax county school system from k-12, and I can assure you that most kids subsisted off of pizza, nuggets french fries and chocolate milk. I doubt that much has changed in the 10 years since I was in grade school, and the photo used confirms it. What a low standard. Jaime Oliver is right, our food education is appalling, we do need a food revolution if anything is going to change. This award for FCPS sickens and insults me."
7 months ago