Meeting discusses Institute of Medicine recommendations and child nutrition reauthorization
Foodservice directors from some of the largest school districts in the country gathered in Washington D.C. the week of October 18-20 for the 3rd annual meeting of the Director's Consortium of Large Foodservice Authorities, held during the National Frozen & Refrigerated Foods Convention (NFRA).
The group meets annually to share best practices in serving very large school districts with student enrollments of over 75,000. This year, presentations covered topics as diverse as the just released Institute of Medicine nutrition recommendations for schools, issues related to the upcoming child nutrition bill re-authorization, farm-to-fork nutrition education programs and ways USDA commodity distribution programs might be managed for greater efficiencies and better long-term menu planning.
Speakers included Janey Thornton, USDA Deputy Undersecretary for Food, Nutrition and Consumer Services, representatives from USDA's Agricultural Marketing Standards division, USDA's Office of Emergency Management and Food Safety and the Council of Greater City Schools.
In other program activities, attending directors shared individual case studies and participated in facilitated roundtable discussions with supplier sponsors.
New recommendations from the National Academies' Institute of Medicine to update nutrition and meal standards for the National School Lunch and Breakfast programs were released even as the group met, providing plenty of fuel for discussion and speculation during networking periods of the Consortium's meeting.