The Sharing Table – It’s a Good Thing
Continue to develop a Sharing Table Program - 2 of 3 years
In the National School Lunch Program, our students follow Offer vs. Serve, which means that they must select at least 3 of 5 components when going through the lunch line and one of those components must be a fruit or vegetable. Our students are always reminded to choose wisely, but the choice is theirs. Sometimes, their eyes are a little bigger than their stomachs and they choose items that they just cannot consume.
In an effort to reduce the amount of food waste and encourage the consumption of foods served, our school food service department has established "sharing tables." Prepackaged items that are not opened, and fruits that have not been sampled, may be placed on the table by students as they exit the dining room. Students who are still hungry or who would like to supplement the lunch they brought from home may help themselves to the food that is on the table.
In many cases, very little food remains at the end of the day. Whatever food is leftover cannot be taken back into the kitchen and must be disposed of; however, several schools are working with local charities and churches to come by the school and pick up the leftover food each day to be served in community feeding programs. Principals are happy with the process and the result is a Win - Win for all.